Leaf from a Book of Hours: John on Patmos (1 of 2 Excised Leaves)

Leaf from a Book of Hours: John on Patmos (1 of 2 Excised Leaves)

c. 1465

Ink, tempera and gold on vellum

Leaf: 23.7 x 18.6 cm (9 5/16 x 7 5/16 in.)

The Jeanne Miles Blackburn Collection 2011.62

Location

Description

The miniature of St. John comes from a cycle of evangelist portraits forming the lessons following the calendar. The Evangelist John is shown seated on the Island of Patmos, to which he was banished by the Roman Emperor Domitian. It was here, as tradition has it, that John composed his Book of Revelation. A common motif is the inclusion of a mischievous devil who attempts to distract the saint from his sacred work by stealing his ink bottle. The Master of Jacques de Luxembourg had a strong sense of visual detail, particularly in architecture, which he typically combined with a flair for narrative. This points to his origin in eastern France or Flanders, though he may have actually worked in Paris.

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