Today in the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana: a Flemish work of illumination by the great Gerard Horenbout

Horenbout Book of Hours

Ghent or Bruges (Belgium) — 16th century

Horenbout Book of Hours

Horenbout Book of Hours

Ghent or Bruges (Belgium) — 16th century

  1. Gerard Horenbout (ca. 1465–ca. 1541) is considered, alongside Simon Bening (ca. 1483–1561), to be one of the greatest miniaturists of all time

  2. The book of hours named after him contains great calendar pages, beautiful landscapes, and elaborately framed miniatures

  3. Today, this gem finds itself in the rich collection of the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana

Horenbout Book of Hours

Alternative Titles:
  • Libro de Horas de Horenbout
  • Horenbout-Stundenbuch
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
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Price Category: €€ (1,000€ - 3,000€)
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  1. Short Description
  2. Codicology

Short Description

A 16th century Flemish work of book-art with lavishly artistic décor: the so-called Horenbout Book of Hours, which is found today in the rich collection of the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana. Marvelous miniatures, surrounded by splendid frames, gorgeous calendar pages, and fine initials make up the impressive adornment of this manuscript. The artist responsible for these treasures of Flemish illumination is the so-called Jacob’s Master, named after his famous patron King James IV of Scotland. Hiding behind this pseudonym is the famous miniaturist Gerard Horenbout, who was, alongside Simon Bening, the most outstanding figure of 16th century Flemish illumination. The Horenbout Book of Hours is a true treasure chest of miniature painting!

Horenbout Book of Hours

A 16th century Flemish work of book-art with lavishly artistic décor: the so-called Horenbout Book of Hours, which is found today in the rich collection of the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana. Marvelous miniatures, surrounded by splendid frames, gorgeous calendar pages, and fine initials make up the impressive adornment of this manuscript. The artist responsible for these treasures of Flemish illumination is the so-called Jacob’s Master, named after his famous patron King James IV of Scotland. Hiding behind this pseudonym is the famous miniaturist Gerard Horenbout, who was, alongside Simon Bening, the most outstanding figure of 16th century Flemish illumination. The Horenbout Book of Hours is a true treasure chest of miniature painting!

A Grandiose Landscape Painter

Magnificent calendar pages with depictions of scenes from everyday life in the country adorn the beginning of the manuscript. Be it a scene of two farmers cutting hay in a luminous green field, four men pressing wine in a cellar, or the shaving of sheep in Autumn. The ideal of the landscapes depicted is clearly discernable. Such gorgeous landscape-backgrounds are also found in the actual miniatures with depictions of biblical content. The landscape turns to blue in the distance and in the foreground presents green fields, blue skies, and various hills and boulders.

A Bed of Flowers for the Miniatures

Architectural elements also find artful application in the miniatures. The design vocabulary of the Gothic architecture was integrated into the depictions. Bright, decorative frames portraying buds and blooms, sometimes in decorative porcelain vases, sometimes growing out of gorgeous and artful ornaments, stretch out around these exquisite central miniatures. Snails, dragon flies, butterflies and other animals and insects populate these floral still-lives of cloves, carnations, daisies, and larkspurs. This artistic adornment is itself worthy of note in light of the extravagant furnishings of Flemish manuscripts in this period!

The Master of this Splendor

The 482 pages of the book of hours with 19 full-page and 8 smaller miniatures as well as 12 miniature pages originate from one of the most important Flemish miniaturists of the 16th century. The manuscript is also named after him: Gerard Horenbout (1465–1541), a Flemish painter, who also furnished manuscripts in addition to panel paintings and altars. He is also known as the Jacob’s Master, which he earned for the commission of a book of hours from King James IV of Scotland. In 1515, Horenbout was identified as a court painter for Margaret of Austria before going to England from 1522–25. His daughter was also known to the English court painter. Horenbout is above all famous for the Spinola Hours or his Grimani Breviarium. He was, along with Simon Bening, one of the leading Flemish illuminators of the 16th century!

Codicology

Alternative Titles
Libro de Horas de Horenbout
Horenbout-Stundenbuch
Size / Format
462 pages / 20.0 x 14.3 cm
Date
16th century
Language

1 available facsimile edition(s) of „Horenbout Book of Hours“

Libro de Horas de Horenbout
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Horenbout Book of Hours – Vat. Lat. 3770 – Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
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Libro de Horas de Horenbout

1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size)
Publisher
Testimonio Compañía Editorial – Madrid, 2014
Limited Edition
980 copies
Binding
Full leather with generous blind stamping
Commentary
1 volume by Jorge Mejía
More Information
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.
Price Category: €€ (1,000€ - 3,000€)
Edition available
Price: Login here!
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