Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object
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The Prayer Book of Bonne of Luxembourg, Duchess of Normandy

Artist:
Attributed to Jean Le Noir (French, active 1331–75) , and Workshop
Date:
before 1349
Geography:
Made in Paris, France
Culture:
French
Medium:
Tempera, grisaille, ink, and gold on vellum
Dimensions:
Overall (closed): 5 3/16 x 3 13/16 x 1 5/8 in. (13.2 x 9.7 x 4.2 cm) Overall (approx. size opened): 5 3/16 x 7 11/16 x 2 13/16 in. (13.2 x 19.5 x 7.1 cm) individual folios: 4 15/16 x 3 9/16 in. (12.6 x 9 cm) Storage (Book Box): 6 5/16 x 5 3/16 x 2 3/8 in. (16 x 13.2 x 6.1 cm)
Classification:
Manuscripts and Illuminations
Credit Line:
The Cloisters Collection, 1969
Accession Number:
69.86
Not on view
The coat of arms that often appears in this book indicates that it was made for Bonne of Luxembourg, a Bohemian princess who married John, duke of Normandy in 1332. She died of plague in 1349; her husband later became John the Good, king of France.

The use of grisaille (shades of grey) for the figures, the richly colored, decorative backgrounds, and the marginal images reflect the influence of Jean Pucelle, the artist of the Hours of Jeanne d’Evreux in The Cloisters collection. This manuscript is likely by Jean Le Noir—an illuminator in the service of John the Good—who collaborated with his daughter, the enlumineresse (female illuminator) Bourgot.

This manuscript apparently passed into the collection of Bonne’s oldest son, Charles V of France, who established a royal library. Her third son, Jean, duc de Berry, was the patron of The Cloisters’ Belles Heures.
Bonne of Luxembourg(d. 1349) ; Charles V, King of France(by descent, d. 1380) ; Ambroise Firmin-Didot, Paris (until 1882) ; [his sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris (June 12–17, 1882, no. 3)] ; Baron Horace de Landau, Florence (d. 1903) ; by descent to his niece, Jenny Finaly, Florence and Paris (ca. 1903–d. 1938) ; by descent to her son, Horace Finaly, Paris (1938–d. 1945) ; [Landau collection sale, Sotheby's, London(July 12–13, 1948, no. 97)] ; Martin Bodmer Library, Geneva (through H. P. Kraus, New York, 1969)
Morand, Kathleen. Jean Pucelle. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1962. no. 4, pp. 40-41, pl. XIX b, c.

Deuchler, Florens. "Looking at Bonne of Luxembourg's Prayer Book." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 29, no. 6 (February 1971). pp. 267-278, fig. 1,3-10,12-4,16-7.

Vaurie, Charles. "Birds in the Prayer Book of Bonne of Luxembourg." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s, 29, no. 6 (February 1971).

Simson, Otto von. Das Mittelalter II: das Hohe Mittelalter. Propyläen Kunstgeschichte, Vol. 6. Berlin: Propylaën Verlag, 1972. p. 134, pl. VII.

Meiss, Millard. French Painting in the Time of Jean de Berry: The Limbourgs and their Contemporaries. Volume 1, Text. New York: G. Braziller, 1974. pp. 185–86, 401, 464 n. 449.

Meiss, Millard. French Painting in the Time of Jean de Berry: The Limbourgs and their Contemporaries. Volume 2, Illustrations. New York: G. Braziller, 1974. fig. 682.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Notable Acquisitions (Metropolitan Museum of Art) no. 1965/1975 (1975). fig. p. 175.

Raggio, Olga, ed. Patterns of Collecting: Selected Acquisitions, 1965-1975; Explanatory Texts. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975. p. 18.

Avril, François. Manuscript Painting at the Court of France: the Fourteenth Century (1310-1380). New York: G. Braziller, 1978. no. VII, pp. 22, 74, pl. 18a-b.

Legner, Anton, ed. Die Parler und der schöne Stil, 1350-1400: Europäische Kunst unter den Luxemburgern. Vol. 1. Cologne: Museen der Stadt Köln, 1978. p. 66.

Legner, Anton, ed. Die Parler und der schöne Stil, 1350-1400: Europäische Kunst unter den Luxemburgern. Vol. 3. Cologne: Museen der Stadt Köln, 1978. pp. 76, 96.

Les fastes du Gothique: Le siècle de Charles V. Paris: Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, 1981. no. 267, pp. 315–16.

Cazelles, Raymond. The Très Riches Heures of Jean, Duke of Berry: Commentary to the Facsimile Edition of Manuscript 65 from the Collection of the Musée Condé, Chantilly. New York: H. N. Abrams, 1984. p. 31.

Sandler, Lucy Freeman. "Jean Pucelle and the Lost Miniatures of the Belleville Breviary." The Art Bulletin 66, no. 1 (March 1984). pp. 86, 92, 94, fig. 17, 27.

Husband, Timothy B., and Charles T. Little. Europe in the Middle Ages. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1987. no. 107, pp. 114-115.

Cazelles, Raymond. Illuminations of Heaven and Earth: the Glories of the Très Riches Heures du duc de Berry. New York: H. N. Abrams, 1988. p. 203.

Sterling, Charles. La peinture médiévale à Paris, 1300–1500. Vol. 1. Paris: Bibliothèque des Arts, 1990. pp. 105, 106, 108–13, 128, 154, fig. 54, 56, 58.

Marks, Richard. Stained Glass in England during the Middle Ages. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1993. p. 158.

Mellinkoff, Ruth. Outcasts: Signs of Otherness in Northern European Art of the Late Middle Ages. Vol. 1. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993. p. 136.

Mellinkoff, Ruth. Outcasts: Signs of Otherness in Northern European Art of the Late Middle Ages. Vol. 2. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993. fig. VI.56.

Krieger, Michaela. Grisaille als Metapher: zum Entstehen der Peinture en Camaieu im frühen 14. Jahrhundert. Vienna: Verlag Adolf Holzhausens, 1995. pp. 169-70, fig. 119, pl. XIX-XX.

Manion, Margaret M. "Women, Art and Devotion: Three French Fourteenth-Century Royal Prayer Books." In The Art of the Book: Its Place in Medieval Worship, edited by Bernard J. Muir, and Margaret M. Manion. Exeter: University of Exeter Press, 1998. pp. 21-40, fig. 2, 14-15.

Fajt, Jiri, and Barbara Drake Boehm, ed. Karl IV., Kaiser von Gottes Gnaden: Kunst und Repräsentation des Hauses Luxemburg 1310-1437. Munich: Deutscher Kunstverlag, 2006. no. 5, pp. 81–82.

Campbell, C. Jean. The Commonwealth of Nature: Art and Poetic Community in the Age of Dante. University Park, Pa.: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2008. pp. 50–51, fig. 25.

Husband, Timothy B. The Art of Illumination: The Limbourg Brothers and the Belles Heures of Jean de France, Duc de Berry. New York ; New Haven: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2008. p. 25, fig. 26.

Lermack, Annette. "The Pivotal Role of the Two Fools Miniature in the Psalter of Bonne of Luxembourg." Gesta 47, no. 2 (2008). pp. 79-95, fig. 1-2, 6-10.

Borchert, Till-Holger, ed. Jan Van Eyck: Grisallas. Madrid: Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, 2009. no. 6, pp. 140-6, 288-90, fig. 76.

Borchert, Till-Holger. "Color lapidum: una aproximación a las representaciones en grisalla en la Baja Edad Media." In Jan Van Eyck: Grisallas, edited by Till-Holger Borchert. Madrid: Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, 2009. pp. 21-25, 242-245.

Holcomb, Melanie. "Virtuosismo en blanco y negro: del dibujo a la grisalla." In Jan Van Eyck: Grisallas, edited by Till-Holger Borchert. Madrid: Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, 2009. pp. 63-65; 258-259.

Bynum, Caroline Walker. Christian Materiality: An Essay on Religion in Late Medieval Europe. New York: Zone Books, 2011. pp. 197, 199-201, fig. 45.



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