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THE KATHERINA HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin and French, ILLUM...

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Estimate: £120,000 - £180,000
ca. US$183,381 - US$275,071
Price realised:  £169,250
ca. US$258,643
Lot number 41, Views: 96

THE KATHERINA HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin and French, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM
THE KATHERINA HOURS, use of Rome, in Latin and French, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM [Tours, c.1485-90] 213 x 150mm. 96 leaves, lacking 6 leaves (including 3 with miniatures), TWENTY-ONE SMALL MINIATURES OR HISTORIATED INITIALS with three-sided illuminated borders, EIGHT LARGE MINIATURES in arched compartments within full-page borders, FULL-PAGE MINIATURE IN AN ARCHITECTURAL FRAME (inconsequential spots and small smudges in a few margins). English red morocco gilt, c.1700 (upper cover abraded, wear with loss at head and foot of spine). Late Victorian, c.1870-80, box of rosewood imitating a book with a binding à la cathédrale , inlaid on each side with a Gothic Revival design in ivory, sycamore and fruitwoods (lock defective). PROVENANCE: 1. Made for a woman called Katherina who is named in prayers on ff.82 & 88v. St Catherine is also the first of the female saints in the Suffrages on ff.93-93v. The artist worked in Tours and most of the outdoor scenes appear to be located on the banks of the Loire. 2. A note in pencil, presumably written in 1824 calculates its date and age 'executed in the reign of Henry the Seventh year 1485 - about 339 years old'. 3. E.U. Manning; given to Ruth M. Manning on 30 June 1937 (Manion and Vine, 1984). 4. Deposited on loan to the Fisher Library, University of Sydney 1981-7: their manuscript number 'RB Add. Ms.59' in pencil on the verso of the upper flyleaf. CONTENT: Calendar in Latin and French, ff.1-6v; Gospel Lessons, ff.7-10; ruled blanks, ff.11-12; Office of the Virgin, use of Rome, ff.13-43v: matins (lacking one leaf after f.13 and end) f.13, lauds (lacking opening) f.18, prime f.23v, terce f.26, sext f.29, none f.31v, vespers f.34, compline (lacking two leaves with opening) f.38; variants for the days of the week f.39, Hours of the Cross (lacking two leaves with all but last verse), f.44; Hours of the Holy Spirit, ff.44v-46v; Penitential Psalms. ff.47-53v, and Litany, ff.54-56v; Office of the Dead, use of Rome, ff.57-80v; ruled blank, f.81; Deus qui voluisti , ff.82-82v; Obsecro te (feminine forms), ff.82v-84v; ruled blanks, ff.85-86; Suffrages, ff. 87-95v: to Sts Michael f.87, Stephen f.87v, Sebastian f.87v, Christopher f.88v, Andrew f.89v, Claude f.89v, Martin f.90, Nicholas f.91, Benedict f.91v, ruled blanks ff.92-92v, Catherine f.93, Barbara f.93v, Margaret f.94, Geneviève f.94v, Apollonia f.95, Mary Magdalene f.95v, ruled blanks ff.96-96v. ILLUMINATION: This magnificent prayer-book is a particularly fine example of the mature illumination of the Master of the Hours of Jean Charpentier, a follower of Jean Fouquet active in Tours and neighbouring regions of the Loire Valley from 1475 to 1490. His eponymous manuscript (Angers, Bibl. municipale, Ms.2048) was commissioned by Jean Charpentier (d.1505), notary and secretary of King Charles VIII (1483-1498). The anonymous master's artistic identity was first established by François Avril ('Manuscrits à peintures d'origine français à la Bibliothèque nationale de Vienne', Bulletin Monumental , vol.134, IV, 1976, pp.329-38). Evolutions in his style, however, led to his oeuvre being divided between two miniaturists named after Books of Hours in the Morgan Library: the Master of Morgan 96 and the Master of Morgan 366 (Plummer, 1982, pp.44-6). The stylistic similarity of the works indicates that they were produced in the same workshop and they are now generally assigned to a single artistic personality. The harmonious palette of luminous gold and opaque blue, red, green and mauve, solid, poised figures with prominent round heads modelled by deep shadows, and their swathes of voluminous drapery highlighted in gold, as seen in the dress of the Virgin that envelopes the prie-dieu in the Annunciation, are characteristic of the Charpentier Master's illuminations. His compositions and layouts show the influence of Jean Fouquet For example, the positioning of the figures of Gabriel and the Virgin in an interior on either side of a window beyond which

Informations about the auction
Auction house: Christie's
Title: The Arcana Collection: Exceptional Illuminated Manuscripts and Incunabula, Part I
Date of the auction: 7 Jul 2010
Address: Christie's
7 July 2010, London, King Street