Book of Hours

Accession number: 
MS M.454
Book of Hours
Italy, probably Milan, ca. 1470.
20th-century purple velvet in maroon morocco case.
Purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1911.
226 leaves, the modern foliation mistakenly jumps from fol. 150r to fol. 160r, (1 column, 17 lines), bound : vellum, ill. ; 190 x 130 mm
Probably made for Cecilia Gonzaga (1451-1472) daughter of Lodovico II and Barbara of Brandenberg; her name in one of the prayers, and Gonzaga arms and devices throughout the text: a white doe with the motto "Bi d(er) graph"; a dove perched on a coiled and smoking tree trunk inscribed: "vrai amor non se cang"; a muzzled and leashed hound; arms on fol. 190 (1 per pale or a stem vert springing from a log, on a canton or two pales gules); other arms on fol. 205 (quarterly 1-4 vairy undy); bought by James Dennistoun of Dennistoun (1803-1855) in Rome in 1838; Bertram, 4th Earl Ashburnham (1797-1878) sale (Sotheby's, May 1, 1899, lot 70) to Quaritch; Lebeufe de Montgermont (1841-1918), (catalogue, 1914, VII, no. 35); purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) from Rahir in 1911; J.P. Morgan (1867-1913).

Ms. book of hours for the use of Rome (Hours of the Virgin, Office of the Dead); written and illuminated in Italy, probably in Milan, ca. 1470.
Decoration: 26 half-page miniatures, 12 historiated roundels in borders, 5 historiated initials, and 41 initials with busts.
Artist: two distinct hands; one a Milanese artist identified in other manuscripts (including Pierpont Morgan Library MS M.139 and Paris, Bibliothèque nationale MS Latin 4596).

Latin and Italian