Exhibitions/ Art Object
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Hebrew Bible: Centaurs, Mermen and Other Creatures (fols. 442v-443)

Artist:
Illuminated by Joseph the Frenchman
Date:
1299–1300
Geography:
Made in Spain
Medium:
Tempera, gold, and ink on parchment
Dimensions:
Overall: 11 7/16 x 8 7/8 x 3 15/16 in., 9.464lb. (29 x 22.5 x 10 cm, 4.293kg)
Classification:
Manuscripts and Illuminations
Credit Line:
Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal, Lisbon (BNP, IL.72)
Not on view
Some of the most inventive decoration in this bible resides in the compendium of Hebrew grammar included at the back of the book. Each double-page spread of the supplementary text provided the artist, Joseph the Frenchman, with an opportunity to experiment with elaborate framing devices. Here, the text is enclosed within an interlocking geometric form, while an array of creatures—from centaurs to hens and chicks—inhabits the margins.