Oct 16, 2012

Leaf from a Psalter and Prayerbook: Calendar Page with Labors (recto) and Calendar Page with Peasant (verso)

Leaf from a Psalter and Prayerbook: Calendar Page with Labors (recto) and Calendar Page with Peasant (verso)

c. 1524

Part of a set. See all set records

Ink, tempera and liquid gold on vellum

Leaf: 16.6 x 13.5 cm (6 9/16 x 5 5/16 in.)

The Jeanne Miles Blackburn Collection 2011.67



These three leaves represent the charming, intricate decoration found throughout the parent volume, its leaves now dispersed. Virtually every border, recto and verso, was decorated with liquid gold and highlighted with a variety of flowers, fruits, and vegetables—carnations, thistles, roses, violets, peas, melons—as well as cornucopias, satyrs, masks, insects, birds, etc. The decoration is particularly charming because of the little vignettes within the borders. These motifs depict a girl kneading bread, a cook ladling soup, a goose nibbling grapes off a vine, and a satyr with a horn. Such details would have been a sumptuous delight to the original owner. This was a highly personalized volume, apparently written and illuminated in North Germany. The prominent mention of Saint Godehard (died 1038), Bishop of Hildesheim, in the original manuscript suggests that it was produced in that city.

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