Rediscovered in the Museo Arqueológico Nacional in Madrid in 1882: a small and magnificent illuminated book of hours from France

Small Book of Hours of Philip II

Small Book of Hours of Philip II

Small Book of Hours of Philip II

  1. A small gem of late medieval illumination originating from France sometime between 1525 and 1550

  2. Only about 7.7 x 5 cm in size, it is attributed to the Master of Getty Epistles

  3. It came to Spain with Elisabeth de Valois (1545–68), third wife and queen consort of King Philip II of Spain (1527–98)

Small Book of Hours of Philip II

Small Book of Hours of Philip II – Museo Arqueológico Nacional (Madrid, Spain)
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  1. Short Description
  2. Codicology
Short Description

Every now and then, a chance discovery is made that electrifies historians and manuscript lovers, reminding us that there is still much to learn about the Middle Ages, and that more wonderful artifacts are waiting to be discovered. Such a discovery was made in 1882: a splendid 16th century book of hours that once belonged to a French princess who became a Spanish queen.

Small Book of Hours of Philip II

In 1882, a wonderful discovery was made in the bowels of the Museo Arqueológico Nacional in Madrid: a small gem of late medieval illumination originating from France sometime between 1525 and 1550 in the Workshop of the Hours of 1520. Today, the tiny manuscript represents a highlight of the museum’s collection. The codex is attributed to the Master of the Getty Epistles and, measuring only 5 x 7.7 cm but comprising 304 pages altogether, it is the smallest manuscript produced by this atelier. Often referred to as the Diminuto Devocionario or Tiny Devotion, the manuscript is actually part of the rich tradition of the book of hours. It is believed to have made its way to Spain in the possession of Elisabeth de Valois (1545–68), third wife and queen consort of King Philip II of Spain (1527–98). The 12 miniatures in the codex are of high artistic value as evidenced by the refinement of the artistry, including the frames, and the delicate color palette. A true-to-original blue leather binding features an embossed diamond pattern and gold stars. The manuscript stands today as a wonderfully preserved specimen attesting to the influence of the Italian Renaissance in France.

1 available facsimile edition(s) of „Small Book of Hours of Philip II“

Diminuto devocionario Facsimile

Small Book of Hours of Philip II – Museo Arqueológico Nacional (Madrid, Spain)
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Diminuto devocionario Facsimile

1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size)
Publisher
Ediciones Grial – Valencia, 1995
Limited Edition
1110 copies
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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