Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin

Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin

Paris (France) — ca. 1450

A masterpiece with a rare miniature, unusual prayers, and gorgeous illumination

  1. This special book of hours is named after a miniature of the Madonna sitting at a loom found within it

  2. Theologians and historians alike are fascinated by its unusual prayers found in few other manuscripts

  3. This specimen from the golden age of French illumination features exceedingly broad decorative frames

Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin

Regular price without login (like new)2,690 
Login for a Better Price!
  1. Description
  2. Detail Picture
  3. Single Page
  4. Facsimile Editions (1)
Description
Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin

The name of this marvelous books of hours can be traced back to an unusual depiction: a miniature of the Madonna sitting at a loom. The so-called Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin is a gorgeous manuscript from the mid–15th century. The impressive book decoration stylistically points to Paris as the place of origin. 15 superb miniature pages adorn the Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin, each with a potpourri of filigree tendril ornamentation, gorgeous initials, and a large, central miniature. The impressive quality of the paintings demonstrates the outstanding position of this manuscript among the works of the golden age of French illumination!

Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin

The name of this marvelous books of hours can be traced back to an unusual depiction: a miniature of the Madonna sitting at a loom. The so-called Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin is a gorgeous manuscript from the mid–15th century. The impressive book decoration stylistically points to Paris as the place of origin. 15 superb miniature pages adorn the Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin, each with a potpourri of filigree tendril ornamentation, gorgeous initials, and a large, central miniature. The impressive quality of the paintings demonstrates the outstanding position of this manuscript among the works of the golden age of French illumination!

Maria at a Loom

Folio 91 of the book of hours presents a magnificent miniature, which follows an unusual iconography: a depiction of the Virgin Mary weaving. Mary sits with her flowing, luminous blue dress on a weaving stool, looking out directly at the beholder. The scene unfolds under a refined arched construction and the Madonna also sits under a splendid red baldachin. This scene of the weaving Virgin, deeply immersed in her work, lends the manuscript its name.

Additional Superb Paintings

Manuscript 15452 of the Museo de la Fundación Lázaro Galdiano in Madrid delights with its remaining miniatures and other book decoration as well. Exceedingly broad decorative frames surround the 15 magnificent full-page miniatures. The filigree tendril ornamentation around a central miniature in a round-arch frame is occasionally complimented by an additional, second ornamentally-designed frame directly around the miniature. A grandiose initial in the respective lines of text concerning the illustration round out the impression of numerous decorative elements. Even the pages of text are superbly bright and entertaining, but also tastefully designed with initials, tendril bordures, and decorative elements in the lines of text.

Typical and Extravagant

This magnificence on 365 pages of parchment arose ca. 1450 in Paris. Therefore, the Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin is a worthy attestation of the golden age of French illumination! Precious gold leaf lends the book decoration an even greater aura of magnificence. Alongside a calendar, the Office of the Dead, the Penitential Psalms, and other typical content, the Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin additionally contains some unusual prayers. This manuscript is an all-around impressive attestation of 15th century illumination.

Codicology

Alternative Titles
Libro de Horas de la Virgen Tejedora
Stundenbuch der webenden Muttergottes
Livre d'Heures de la Vierge Tisseuse
Libro d'Ore della Madonna Tessitrice
Size / Format
356 pages / 20.5 × 15.3 cm
Origin
France
Date
ca. 1450
Language
Script
Gothic
Illustrations
15 full-page miniatures and many decorated borders
Artist / School

Available facsimile editions:
Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin – Inv. 15452 – Museo de la Fundación Lázaro Galdiano (Madrid, Spain)
Millennium Liber – Madrid, 2002
Limited Edition: 1015 copies
Detail Picture

Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin

Presentation of Jesus in the Temple

In this colorful specimen from the golden age of French illumination, the Virgin Mary presents Jesus to Simeon, the high priest, while Joseph stands back with his hands folded. The prophetess Hannah holds a basket of doves, a common sight in such scenes and an allusion to the Holy Spirit. An arched roof and tiled green floor create a sense of space and depth in the scene, which the artist has filled with numerous details, such as the hairs of Simeon’s beard.

Libro de Horas de la Virgen Tejedora
Single Page

Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin

Virgin Mary at the Loom

This manuscript is named for the magnificent miniature page at hand – a unique image of the Virgin Mary weaving with the help of a simple loom. The arched architecture within which she sits is designed with a wonderful sense of space and perspective. Mary is seated with a serene if somewhat sad expression on her face and flowing blond locks of hair.

Aside from the detail with which the tools being used are depicted, the scene is remarkable for the excessively broad and intricate frame in which it is presented. Colorful and inventive tendrils stretch out across a sea of gold dots and the large blue “D” initial preceding the three lines of text was designed with intricate patterns and curling tendrils against a shimmering gold background.

Libro de Horas de la Virgen Tejedora
Facsimile Editions

#1 Libro de Horas de la Virgen Tejedora

Millennium Liber – Madrid, 2002
Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin – Inv. 15452 – Museo de la Fundación Lázaro Galdiano (Madrid, Spain)
Book of Hours of the Weaving Virgin – Inv. 15452 – Museo de la Fundación Lázaro Galdiano (Madrid, Spain) Copyright Photos: Ziereis Facsimiles

Publisher: Millennium Liber – Madrid, 2002
Limited Edition: 1015 copies
Binding: Brown leather with gold embossing
Commentary: 1 volume by Elisa Ruiz García and François Avril
Language: Spanish
1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size) Reproduction of the entire original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding.
Regular price without login (like new)2,690 
Login for a Better Price!
You might also be interested in:
Book of Hours of Leonor de la Vega
Book of Hours of Leonor de la Vega
Bruges (Belgium) – ca. 1468

Intended as an extremely precious gift: varied borders and 78 full-page miniatures by the Flemish master Willem Vrelant

Experience More
Book of Hours of Ippolita Maria Sforza
Book of Hours of Ippolita Maria Sforza
Paris (France) – Ca. 1495–1504

A nearly complete bestiary: a book treasure for the wife of the King of Naples created by the great Jean Bourdichon

Experience More
Blog articles worth reading
Filter selection
Publisher