THE IMHOF PRAYERBOOK, illuminated by SIMON BENING, in Latin ...
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THE IMHOF PRAYERBOOK, illuminated by SIMON BENING, in Latin and Dutch, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM
THE IMHOF PRAYERBOOK, illuminated by SIMON BENING, in Latin and Dutch, ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM Antwerp [and Ghent] 1511 90 x 62mm. v + 329 + viii leaves, modern pencil foliation 1-342 followed here: 1 7 (of 8, i cancelled blank), 2 8 , 3 4 + 8 , 4-10 8 , 11 1 0 , 12-13 8 , 14-15 6 , 16 9 (i a singleton with miniature), 17-30 8 , 31 9 (i a singleton with miniature), 32 8 , 33 7 (of 8, final blank cancelled), 34-35 8 , 36 9 (iii a singleton with miniature), 37-39 8 , 40 6 , 41 8 , likely lacking a bifolium with text between gatherings 36 and 37; 13 lines of an elegant calligraphic lettre bâtarde with cadels and decorative flourishes, between 14 horizontals and two verticals ruled in pink, justification: 41 x 36mm, rubrics in red, one- and two-line initials of liquid gold against grounds alternately red or blue, TEN MINIATURES FOUR LINES HIGH of Instruments of the Passion, FIVE MINIATURES TWO LINES HIGH of the Wounds of Christ, TWELVE CALENDAR PANEL BORDERS WITH ZODIAC SIGNS IN ROUNDELS with naturalistic flowers strewn on liquid gold grounds, EIGHT SMALL MINIATURES WITH FULL-PAGE BORDERS, some with bas-de-page scenes and others with strewn flowers, insects or birds, one with illusionistic jewels, ELEVEN FULL-PAGE MINIATURES WITH FACING FULL-PAGE BORDERS with bas-de-page scenes, scatter borders with flowers, fruit and branches on gold or coloured grounds some including trompe l'oeil insects, FIVE FURTHER FULL-PAGE BORDERS of similar types, edges gilt and gauffered, old tasselled bookmarker (a few spots, a little marginal darkening and occasional minimal rubbing, insects on ff.73 and 272 very slightly cropped). CONTEMPORARY RED VELVET OVER WOODEN BOARDS with elaborate German silver clasp, the foliate pierced mounts probably contemporary and the hinged clasp later (edges of velvet rubbed, headbands c.1900). Red solander box. A JEWEL OF ILLUMINATION -- THE EARLIEST DATED WORK OF SIMON BENING PROVENANCE: 1. Hans V Imhof (1461-1522): The colophon on f.334v records the writing and completion of the manuscript in Antwerp in 1511. It has been generally accepted that the effaced coat of arms on f.25, discernible if viewed from the reverse against strong light, belongs to the Imhof, one of the patrician families of Nuremberg. The presence of the Suffrage to St Sebald, patron saint of Nuremberg and the name saint of the church where the family had their burial chapel is consistent with this. The importance given to John the Baptist and John the Evangelist, both the subjects of miniatures and devotions, suggest that the original owner was named Johannes or Hans. The Imhof family had amassed immense wealth from the spice trade and had offices throughout Europe, including Antwerp where the manuscript was written, and for many years until his death in 1522 the firm was headed by the merchant and banker Hans V. The family provided important and discriminating patrons of art in their own city and none more so than Hans who was a friend of Albrecht Dürer, the sculptor Adam Kraft and the humanist Willibald Pirckheimer. It is likely that the manuscript was commissioned by him. 2. Herman Hendrick Beels, van Heemstede (1827-1916) and by descent until sold Sotheby's, 21 June 1988, lot 107. CONTENT: Calendar ff.6-21; Computistical tables and roundels ff.21v-23v (ff.22 and 23 bound-in upside-down); Extract from the Gospel of St John ff.25-26v; Passion according to St John ff.28-42v; Penitential Psalms and Litany ff.45-72v; Prayers to Christ and the Virgin opening with the indulgenced prayer on the name of Jesus ff.73-80v; Fifteen Oes and further prayers ff.82-98v; Prayers on the Passion and other prayers, in Dutch ff.100-120v; Prayer on the Resurrection and other prayers ff.122-126v; Verses of St Gregory and other prayers, in Dutch ff.128-175; Prayers opening with a prayer for Christmas ff.177-193v; Prayers to Christ and the Virgin opening with Salve Sancta Facies and including the Sorrows of the Virgin, prayers to be said during Mass and St
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|Titel:||The Arcana Collection: Exceptional Illuminated Manuscripts, Part III|
6 July 2011, London, King Street
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