Prayer book

Accession number: 
MS M.292
Prayer book
Tours and Paris, France, ca. 1500-1511.
16th century French golden brown morocco over pasteboard, gold-tooled with Passion emblems and two monograms (M and Y); edges gilt; in citron morocco case by Marguerite Duprez Lahey, lettered: Livere de Prieres - Atelier de Bourdichon, vers 1510.
Purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1907.
36 leaves (1 column, 23 lines), bound : vellum, ill. ; 237 x 158 mm
Collection of Pierre de Rohan, maréchal de Gié (1451-1513), at the Château du Verger; sent by the Prince de Rohan to his daughter-in-law, the Princess Guéméné, and placed by her (June 20, 1763) in the Soubise library (Soubise sale, Paris, 1789, lots 593-603, difficult to identify); Sotheby's sale (London, Mar. 15, 1907, no. 461, plate) to Belin; purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) from Théophile Belin in Apr. 1907; J.P. Morgan (1867-1943).

Ms. written with illuminated borders in Tours, France, ca. 1500 with additions by Jean Bourdichon and Jean Pichore ca. 1511.
Decoration: 8 full-page miniatures (tipped in) on the versos with blank rectos, decorated initials, and marginal decoration throughout (see initial "0/D" on fol. 25r for example of decorated initial). The Franciscan cordelière frames many of the borders, being especially prominent on fols. 4r, 7r, and 9r.
Artists: Jean Bourdichon, or his workshop, for six miniatures; Jean Pichore (formerly called the Master of Morgan 85), or his workshop, for two miniatures on fol. 21v and 24v.
M. 292 is one of two manuscripts in the Morgan Library (the other is M. 291) with a majority of miniatures by Bourdichon and his workshop and several by Jean Pichore. These two manuscripts were thought to have been started in Tours, where Bourdichon had his workshop, and before 1502 when Pichore was documented in Paris. However the two miniatures by Pichore in M. 292, fol. 21v (Ascension) and 24v (Christ in Gethsemane) are based on Dürer's woodcuts of the same subjects in his Small Passion of 1511 (Bartsch 50 and 26). See C. Zöhl, Jean Pichore, 2004, pp. 60, 187, fig. 21. It is possible that the manuscript was started for Pierre de Rohan before he fell out of favor in 1504 and was placed under house arrest. Freed in 1509, he retired to his grand château du Verger and might have had the full-page folios added before his death in 1513.
Revised: 2015

Latin, Italian, and Middle French