MS M.1044, fols. 45v–46r

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Gaston III Phœbus, Count of Foix

Livre de la chasse

Paris, France
ca. 1406–1407
381 x 290 mm

Bequest of Clara S. Peck, 1983

MS M. 1044
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Calling the Hounds
Phoebus advised the hunter to speak or call the hounds in many languages. It was also important to blow the horn in various ways, as communication over a distance was essential to a successful hunt. Here, before an elegantly robed Phoebus, three pages practice blowing horns while three others are whooping, or hollaing. Since the medieval hunting horn had only one moot (note), information was conveyed by long ones, short ones, and pauses. According to John I, king of Portugal (r. 1385–1433), the harmonies and melodies of Guillaume de Machaut were not as euphonious as the combined sounds of the hounds, the horns, and the hue and cry of the huntsmen.


Image courtesy of Faksimile Verlag Luzern