Book of Hours

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MS M.732
Book of Hours
Tours, France, ca. 1515.
16th- or 17th-century violet velvet over boards.
Purchased by J.P. Morgan (1867-1943) in 1927.
62 leaves (1 column, 20 lines), bound : vellum, ill. ; 302 x 200 mm
Arms and emblems of Cardinal Cristoforo Madruzzo (died 1578) added on fol. 2v-3; 61-61v by an anonymous mid-sixteenth-century Italian illuminator; sold after 1837 by Payne and Foss to Robert S. Holford; purchased from the estate of Lt.-Col. Sir George Holford of Dorchester House, London, by J.P. Morgan (1867-1943) in Nov. 1927.

Ms. book of hours for the use of Rome (Hours of the Virgin; manuscript lacks calendar, Office of the Dead, litany, and Suffrages); written and illuminated in Tours, France, ca. 1515.
Decoration: 8 full-page miniatures, 96 text pages bordered with flowers, fruits, and various plants, each identified by name in Latin and French.
Artists: Jean Bourdichon and an anonymous mid-sixteenth-century Italian illuminator who painted the Madruzzo arms and emblems on fols. 2v, 3r, 61r, 61v.
Bourdichon's full page illustrations and botanical borders are very close to his work in the Hours of Anne de Bretagne (Paris, Bibliothéque nationale, Lat. 9474).
This may be the book of hours Bourdichon finished in 1518 for François 1er after working on it for four years (see Nicholas Herman, "'Ut certius et melius ipsum depingeret': Observations sur la production et l'activité tardive de Jean Bourdichon," Peindre en France à la Renaissance: 1, Frédérick Elsig ed., 2011, p. 223).
Revised: 2015

Latin and French