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Bible

Date:
ca. 1250–75
Geography:
Made in Paris, France
Culture:
French
Medium:
Tempera and gold on parchment; leather binding
Dimensions:
Overall (closed): 10 1/2 x 7 1/8 x 3 1/2 in. (26.6 x 18.1 x 8.9 cm) single folio: 9 15/16 x 6 1/2 in. (25.3 x 16.5 cm)
Classification:
Manuscripts and Illuminations
Credit Line:
Gift of John L. Feldman, in memory of his father, Alvin Lindberg Feldman, 1997
Accession Number:
1997.320
  • Description

    In the thirteenth century, Paris, with its renowned university, became Europe's premier center for the creation of illuminated manuscripts. Typical of the work of the city's busy ateliers are the "University Bibles," which were created for a wide range of clients, including clerics, laity, and students, and are characterized by painstaking scribal work and tiny but detailed illustrations. This Bible is one of the finest examples of the type, which survives in relatively large numbers. More richly illustrated (with eighty-one historiated initials) and significantly larger than most such Bibles, it is particularly interesting for its opening of the Book of Genesis, which presents the seven days of Creation in superimposed octofoils and the silhouette of a Dominican kneeling beneath an image of the Crucifixion.

  • Provenance

    From the Carthusian Abbey of Fontaine-Notre-Dame, Bourg-Fontaine (after 1325); Jean Budé (died 1501), Paris; Guillaume Budé (died 1540), Paris; President de Saint-André ; Jesuit Collège de Clermont, Paris (dispersed 1589-1610); Byron Holland ; Sir Sydney Cockerell (1910–1957), Cambridge; Sir Alfred Chester Beatty, London (sold 1933); William Permain, London; William Randolph Hearst (American, 1863–1951), New York and San Simeon (until 1944); [ Brummer Gallery, Paris and New York (1944-1948)]; Joel and Maxine Spitz, Glencoe, Illinois (1948); [ Sotheby's, London(November 29, 1990, lot 98)]; John L. Feldman, Lakewood, Colorado (until 1997)

  • See also
    What
    Where
    When
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
466297:4

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