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MANUSCRIPTS (by location)
[Aschaffenburg, Hofbibliothek, Ms. 13]
Mainzer Evangeliar.
Luzern: Faksimile-Verlag, 2007. 27 x 35.3 cm, 200 pp + commentary.

Codex Aureus is perhaps the most significant work of 13th-c. German painting. It was created around 1250 and since 1803, as part of the Mainz Cathedral treasures, the Mainz Gospels has been preserved in the Hofbibliothek Aschaffenburg. Comprised here, in one volume, are the four Gospels of the New Testament according to Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The Gospels text appears in pure gold whereas the Canon tables and the Gospel prologues (not considered saintly writings) are in black ink. The Gospels are written in textura script considered now to be the most sophisticated calligraphic script of the Gothic period. Textura was also the model for Gutenberg’s movable type. The anonymous master of the Codex created 71 individual images and some full-page miniatures to illustrate the New Testament. A unique feature of 13th-c. art is the wealth of images illustrating the life of Christ. Here they are depicted in impressive golden grounds and vibrant glowing colors. Canon tables, large ornamental initials and ca. 300 multicolored small initials adorn this marvellous MS. The Gospels are a testimony of the early Gothic jagged-style (Zackenstil) which conquered German book illumination during the 13th century. The new style with its jagged, angular broken drapery and sometimes overly sharp contours was influenced by the arrival of Gothic architecture and the wish to confront religious sculptural art with an equally expressive and vivacious art form. Byzantine influences in the figural design fuse with new impulses from France to create a moving expressiveness and a three dimensionality of almost relievo quality. Commentary by Harald Wolter-von dem Knesebeck. Limited edition of 980 copies, bound (after the 13th-c. Preetz Evangelarium) in leather with embossed lines, and inserted silver plate and silver medallion showing the Evangelists; clamshell case covered in burgundy velvet.  

[Augsburg, Universitätsbibliothek, I.2.4° 15]
Biblia de Pamplona.
Madrid: Eikon Editores, 2005. 16 x 23.5 cm, 544 pp + commentary.

This Codex, commissioned by King Sancho VII of Navarra shortly before 1200, contains the Old and New Testaments as well as representations of numerous saints, plus an appendix of apocryphal texts. The MS is exceptional both for its text and for its artistic content: 976 illustrations in whole and half pages, accompanied by a brief descriptive text; with such an abundance of rich illustrations the Codex represents a peculiarity for its time since the successive narrative of images is more proper of the late eras; with the beginning of Carolingian art text occupies a predominant place whereas only a few subjects are illustrated. It is at the height of the Middle Ages when this form of biblical illustration returns. At this time the Bible of Pamplona appears, together with 2 clearly related and incomplete MSS from the same atelier, occupying a very special place in the history of biblical illustration. The miniatures are realized in drawings made with fine brush strokes and colored with watercolor techniques. Their strong lines, the originality of the composition and the generous treatment of space are very impressive. In that artistic dramatism numerous stylistic elements from various regions and different times are united and achieve a harmonic and expressive composition. The origin of the text comes from a version of the original vulgate and was inserted after the illustrations in gothic minuscule script where persons and events are presented. Limited edition of 980 copies, bound in leather with silver clasps; black clamshell case with sterling medallion. (few copies remaining) €5286  [84-96254-15-1] 

[Berlin, Staatsbibliothek Preuß. Kulturbesitz, Kupferstichkabinett, 78 D 12]
Tablas de las constelaciones de Alfonso X el Sabio.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2006. 24 x 38 cm, 100 pp + commentary.

A catalogue of stars, constellation by constellation, based on the astronomy of Ptolemy as edited by King Alfonso of Castile. Known as the “Alfonsine Tables”, it was once considered a translation, however new research has identified it as an original Alfonsine work, widely disseminated throughout Europe as of the 1320s. It is the first European MS to cite the Andromeda Nebula, unknown by Ptolemy. Alfonso X stands out in history as the patron of the first European program of investigation in applied astronomy. The analysis of his body of work makes sense only if one considers that the monarch was interested in this science due to its practical applications (astrology and talismanic magic) and did not attempt to cultivate it as a pure science. The Ms includes 50 full-page miniatures adorned with gold and silver. Limited edition of 999 numbered copies bound in leather over wooden boards. €3700   

[Berlin, Staatsbibliothek Preuß. Kulturbesitz, lat. cot. 44]
Recopilación de textos astronómicos.
Barcelona: Liber Millennium, 2007. 11 x 15.5 cm, 24 pp + commentary

In antiquity there existed the belief that heros and famous personalities, upon their death, were transported to the heavens and converted into constellations, so that, looking into the night sky, one could recognize their figures by the position of the stars. This collection of astronomical texts written by an anonymous writer contain a series of illustrations that form part of the “aratea” cycle, constituted by 43 drawings representing the planets, stars and constellations, as well as various schematic treatises. Limited edition of 995 copies bound in leather, with presentation case. €595   

[Berlin, Staatsbibliothek Preuß. Kulturbesitz, theol. lat. 4º 561]
Beato Liébana Códice de Berlin.
Barcelona: Liber Millennium, 2011. 19.5 x 30 cm, 196 pp + commentary.

This MS, probably compiled in Italy, dates back to the early 12th century. One of the least known Beato sources, and once a part of the library of Carlo Morbio of Milan, the codex is written in Carolingian and Beneventian script and contains 55 pen drawings enriched with pigments of red, ochre and yellow hues. The illustrations themselves are somewhat unusual, being an archaic version of the usual Beato iconography. Limited edition of 995 copies bound in leather, with case. €3900   

[Bologna, Museo Internazionale e Biblioteca della Musica, Cod. Q15]
Bologna Q15: The Making and Remaking of a Musical Manuscript. Introductory Study and Facsimile Edition by Margaret Bent. Volume I: Introductory Study. Volume II: Facsimile.
Ars Nova, Nuova Seria, 2. Lucca: LIM Editrice, 2008. 24.5 x 32.5 cm. 2 vols, 400, 686 pp.

This manuscript is the largest international anthology of polyphonic music of the early 15th century. It was compiled in Padua in the early 1420s (stage I) and Vicenza in the early 1430s (stages II-III), all copied by a single scribe. The three illuminations are an unusual luxury for a musical manuscript at this period. It was acquired by Padre Martini in 1757 and is a major treasure of his library in Bologna. About half of its 323 compositions are unique; some others are shared with and complemented by the slightly younger Veneto manuscripts Bologna, Biblioteca Universitaria 2216 and Oxford, Canon. misc. 213. It is the most important source for the works of Zacara and Ciconia and for the early works of Guillaume Du Fay (with 78 works, many of them unica). About 50 composers are represented, including native Italians, and composers from the north who were sought after and made their careers in Italy. It is primarily a collection of mass movements (mostly Glorias and Credos, and a few cycles) and motets. Du Fay's Missa Sancti Jacobi was assembled as a cycle only here, and can now be linked with the humanist circle around the Venetian patrician bishop Pietro Emiliani of Vicenza, in which Q15 was compiled. The 109 motets include compositions in honour of doges, bishops and noblemen. 19 French songs were added at the end of stage I, and 11 laude at stage III. Other late additions are the cycle of 24 hymns (most by Du Fay), 9 Magnificats and 3 sequences. For the first time, the complex codicological history of this manuscript is unravelled and the importance of its many revisions examined. The first compilation was originally much larger; the manuscript now embodies two overlapping, superimposed anthologies. Margaret Bent tells this story in her extensive introductory study, which also includes comprehensive indexes and catalogues. She spells out some of the conclusions to be drawn from the partial destruction of the manuscript by its own creator, a unique and extraordinary testimony to changing taste and contemporary reception. Deluxe limited edition, supplied with slipcase. €1000 978-88-7096-513-1  (more info... )

[Brescia, Biblioteca Civica Queriniana, cod. F.II.1]
Le concordanze di Eusebio.
Torino: UTET, 2006. 25.5 x 34.5 cm, 2 vols, 84, 131 pp.

This rare MS, from the second quarter of the 11th century, is attributed to the “Reichenau School” and is considered one of the finest examples ever created by artists of the Ottonian period. The codex is introduced by 19 leaves, portraying 19 architectural, artfully executed canon arches that frame the Gospel Harmony created by Eusebius, Court Bishop of Constantine and Bishop of Caesarea in Palestine in the 4th century. All folios are ornate with a variety of luxurious decorations with none of the colorful columns being identical; architectural gables and arches, inspired by the classical style, alternate to form a perfectly harmonious composition. This first section is followed by the Gospel Pericopes and includes 11 full-page miniatures as well as 12 luxury initials facing each other and introducing the different feast day readings. The solemn character of the book is further underlined by a number of initials set on purple ground and preceding the individual readings. The vivid orange fillings further enhance the colorfulness so typical of Ottonian illumination from Reichenau. Limited edition of 444 copies.  

[Brussels, Bibl. Royale Albert I, 9428]
Echternacher Evangelistar.
Luzern: Faksimile-Verlag, 2007. 14.7 x 20.5 cm, 310 pp + commentary.

The Echternach Pericopes, from the famous scriptorium of Echternach (situated in what is now Luxembourg), was created around 1030. Just as Reichenau had previously been the first monastery in the Ottonian realm, Echternach was the family convent of the Salian emperors. It also developed its own formal vocabulary, which was based on both older—i.e. late antique, Carolingian, Byzantian and even Insular—and contemporary exemplars. The Echternach Pericopes opens with a display of incredible opulence: two purple pages with fabric imitations (resembling a cover for the unbound body of the book) are followed by a marvellous Maiestas Domini on a royal ground of purple and gold. The ensuing pages are dedicated to the four evangelist portraits, the picture cycle for the Gospels as well as to miniatures showing two saints on a generously applied golden ground. The MS is decorated with a total of 41 gilded miniatures, 13 profusely ornate text pages, as well as over 250 lavishly enlaced gold initials that extend over several lines. Even though a number of scenes seem to follow a predetermined pattern, the monks of Echternach liked to deviate from the usual compositions of their day. For example they created an Annunciation to the Shepherds, which rather than being part of the Nativity, was conceived as a homogenous miniature of its own. The wonderfully glowing colors perfectly match the gold in both frame and nimbs. An absolutely unique feature is the cycle of St. Stephanus, which is composed of 7 self-contained pictures. No other MS is known to contain a similar picture sequence about this martyr. The impressive cycle not only depicts the search for and discovery of the holy man’s bones but also deals with the life and work of the ordinary population. Motifs range from peasants digging with hoe and spade, to vintners being paid with gold pieces.Commentary by Anton von Eux, Bernard Bousmanne & Martina Pippal. Deluxe edition of 980 copies, bound in half leather with heavy oakwook cover and brass clasp—a faithful reproduction of the original; in addition the facsimile is presented in a special wooden box with an elaborate replica of a bone carving inlaid with ornate openwork containing partly painted decorative plates, after a 12th-c. binding of the gospel book now at the abbey of St. Peter in Salzburg.  

[Brussels, Bibl. Royale Albert I, iv 90]
Cancionero de Juana I de Castilla. Bibliothèque Royale de Belgique, Bruselas. Siglo XVI. [title of commentary:] Cancionero de Juana la Loca. La música en la corte de Felipe el Hermoso y Juana i de Castilla / Song Book of Joan the Mad / Das Liederbuch Johannas der Wahnsinnigen.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2006. Oblong, 11 x 9 cm, 60, 359 pp, 1 audio CD.

This lovely Burgundian chansonnier, one of the smallest complete collections of the time, created around 1511, consists of 56 pages of polyphonic music with Latin, French and Flemish texts by leading Netherlandish composers. Its 54 miniatures, made up of delightful little dramatic scenes, botanical designs, or emblema in the style of the Ghent-Bruges school of book illumination, have been linked to the atelier of the prestigious artist Alexander Bening (father of Simon Bening). The book lacks an heraldic device but this in no way rules out an almost certain noble connection as its illuminations belong to a group of books of hours that include the Hours of Joanna of Castile (London, BL, add. 18852). Although the songbook was originally comprised of 4 separate partbooks—superius, alto, tenor, bassus—the bassus partbook is now lost, and the altus (=Bibl. Royal Albert I, ms. iv 1274 ) and tenor (=Bibl. Tournai, ms. 94) are incomplete and less well preserved. The surviving superius part, reproduced for this deluxe facsimile edition, still has its early 16th-c. leather binding decorated with animal figures and vines; it is the work of Lodovicus Bloc, a master bookbinder active in Bruges 1484-1529, credited with binding numerous books for Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy. Contents: 22 songs without attributions; concordances allow us positive identification of most of the composers—Compère (4), Josquin (4), Obrecht, Ockeghem, de la Rue, Agricola, Barbireau, Busnois, Japart, Pipelare, Hayne van Ghizighem (2), Ninot le Petit, and Isaac. Musicological commentary by Honey Meconi, modern transcriptions by Miguel Ángel Picó, and an essay on the making of a codex by José Aspas Romano (texts in Sp-Eng-Ger). Limited edition of 999 copies, bound in full leather with gold, tooling, and leather ties, after the original. Please call for special OMI price. €2800    (more info... )

[Cambridge (MA), Fogg Art Musuem; Rotterdam, Museum Boijmans van Beuningen]
Pasionario púrpura de Fra Angelico.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2007. 8 x 10 cm. 24 pp + commentary.

This unusual MS—executed as its name implies in purple hues—features illuminations by master Italian painter Fra Angelico. The facsimile edition reunites parts of the codex now preserved at two different locations (Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachussetts, & Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam). Fra Angelico, or Beato Angelico, is considered one of the most refined and spiritual artists of his day. In the art of the miniature he practiced a style that was particularly linked with the late gothic heading towards the Renaissance: abstract, luminous and dazzling although greatly restrained internally. Limited edition of 999 copies. €1400   

[Chantilly, Musée Condé, Ms. 388]
Histoire d’amour sans paroles. Racconto per immagini di un corteggiamento.
Ars Illuminandi. Modena: Il Bulino, 2005. 19.2 x 12.7 cm, 30 pp + commentary.

A narration—completely in pictures—of two young court lovers in the north of France at the beginning of the 16th c. The story develops only through the illuminated images—no text—which, thanks to their beauty and exquisite details, show the development of the loving feeling between the two young protagonists. Like illuminated calendar scenes of the period, the painter captures typical everyday activities, rich with foliage, trees, animals, rivers, & city backdrops; the vignettes are made even more poignant with the use of painted borders, resembling real, carved wooden frames. Commentary in Italian. Bound in green leather decorated with a golden frame; wooden case covered with tooled leather. €1250 [88-82651-69-6] 

[Dublin, Irish National Library, ms. 32.513]
Von wundersamen Begebenheiten.
Stuttgart: Verlag Müller & Schindler, 2007. 7.8 x 10 cm. 80 pp + commentary.

This delicate German MS, copied in Cologne around 1460, is a marvellous picture book of the Defensorium inviolatae perpetuaequae virginitatis castissimae genetricis beatae Mariae. 37 leaves are decorated with enchanting full-page miniatures on the recto, complete with short verses of an emblematic nature in German and Latin on the verso. The work is by an unknown artist who took particular joy in this unusual text—illustrating inconceivable happenings such as birds that grow on trees, water that a virgin can carry in a sieve, as well as other better known myths like the phoenix rising from the ashes, Circe turning humans into animals, or the lion who brings his cubs to life with a roar, all that just to prove that Mary's virginity is part of a series of unbelievable but true occurences. The painter, who was probably based in Cologne, is clearly marked by the school of Stefan Lochner: Impressive interiors and atmospheric landscapes of a refreshing colorfulness are distinguishing features of his style, as is the love for details, which requires calm and patient contemplation by the viewer. Commentary by Eberhard König and Ines Dickmann. Limited edition of 800 copies, bound in green velvet (like the original), with golden embroidery; with red leather case. €1190   

[El Escorial, Bibl. del Monasterio, T.j.1 “E2”]
Cantigas de Alfonso X El Sabio, deluxe facsimile.
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, 2010. 35 x 50 cm, 3 vols, 512; 473, 697 pp

El Escorial Ms. T.j.I ("E2")—also known as "Códice Rico"—is the third of four surviving manuscripts that preserve the Cantigas repertoire, settings in a narrative format relating to Marian miracles and festivities. Although incomplete "E2" is considered the most important from the point of view of the miniatures. It is made up of 256 folios of parchment in the elegant French script of 13th-c. codices. Originally it contained 200 cantigas, but the loss of some folios has reduced the count to 196. This codex was lavishly illustrated with 1,257 miniatures on 210 of its folios and depicts a vast array of human typology in Spain during the 13th c. Deluxe, totally new, full-color facsimile in the original format, limited to 980 copies, bound in full leather with tooling. €8000   (more info... )

[Florence, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Ms. Acquisti e Doni 147]
Libro d’ore di Vrelant: Officium Beatae Mariae Virginis secundum usum romanum.
Torino: UTET, 2005. 17.5 x 26.5 cm, 384 pp + commentary.

This MS, with its miniatures executed by the Flemish artist Willelm Vrelant, is a particularly beautiful Book of Hours from the second half of the 15th century. The voluminous codex stands out in the panorama of illuminated MSS on account of its splendid and refined cornices, all of them different and enriched with gold which makes every page a very precious one. The spectacular beauty of this work is further enhanced with 23 full-page miniatures. The Book of Hours of Vrelant was commissioned for a wedding, a custom of the time; in one of its pages we find a splendid portrait of a feminine figure praying. The commissioner of the book, and in the same place the coat of arms of the sponsor appears. Historians believe it belongs to the families of Roberto Villetaneuve and Feydeau de Brou. The MS was donated in 1806 by the Regent Maria Luiva of Spain to the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana where it is conserved. The facsimile is executed in 8 to 11 colors plus gold and metallic colors. Limited edition of 530 copies bound in leather with wooden case.  

[Florence, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Ms. Gaddi 112]
San Francesco d'Assisi. La vita e le opere.
Castelvetro di Modena: ArtCodex, 2010. 21.5 x 28.4 cm. 370 pp + commentary.

Ms. Gaddiano 112 contains an extraordinary recounting of Franciscan works, among them the Legend and Life of St. Francesco in two versions: “I Fioretti di San Francesco (fol. 1-43 & 137-142) and “Il Suo Testamento (fol. 164-166). The decoration of the ms which has 30 filigree initials of 39 narrated stories displays a technique in water color and ink which was not common at that time. In the Middle Ages it was a technique considered poor compared with the rich colors applied with paint brush. The design with ink and water color of the Trecento and Quattrocento is linked to a revival in and renewed interest of the old classic culture and a desire to use a technique devoid of pomp and instead one having an utilitarian character which was a testimony to the unknown miniaturists of the Franciscan codex. Limited edition of 999 copies bound in full leather. €4900    (more info... )

[Florence, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Ms. Strozzi 174]
Francesco Petrarca, I trionfi.
Castelvetro di Modena: ArtCodex, 2010.

Petrarch wrote Trionfi between 1350 and 1374 and in the mid 15th century and versions of the text appeared in sumptuous manuscripts with illustrations. MS Stozzi 174, preserved in the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana is one such example, believed to be decorated by the Florentine artist Apollonio di Giovanni (c.1415-1465), an illuminator and painter specializing in the decoration of bridal chest, spalliere and devotional painting. The manuscript is written in calligraphic mercantesca script with humanistic features. Limited edition of 999 copies. €5700   

[Florence, Biblioteca Riccardiana, Ricc. 453]
La leggenda di santa Margherita e sant’Agnese.
Castelvetro di Modena: ArtCodex, 2008. 10.3 x 14.5 cm, 124 pp + commentary.

This codex is dedicated to a pregnant lady, a member of the ruling class, named Anna. The codex narrates the stories of two martyred saints—Margareta and Agnes, both horribly tortured after rejecting the offers of courtship of persons in high places. Margareta is counted as one of the 14 Holy Helpers and is the patron saint of farmers, virgins, wet-nurses, barren wives and is also called upon in the face of difficult births. Agnes is most often depicted as a lamb, probably because of the similarity of her name with the Latin “agnus” meaning lamb. She is patron saint of chastity, virgins, children and gardeners. The codex is the richest illustrated corpus of the legend. Its decoration is composed of filigree letters and 33 scenes depicted in full-page miniatures. Its elegant and ethereal characters are portrayed on a gold-leaf background, and move among splendid settings reminiscent of the late 13th-century Byzantine style. Attributed to an artist close to the Master of Gerona. Commentary by Giovanni Lazzi. Limited edition of 999 copies bound in blue silken velvet with gold and silver fittings and lapis lazuli stone on the cover center. €4900   

[Florence, Biblioteca Riccardiana, Ricc. 483]
Dono d’Amore. Le ore Capponi-Ridolfi.
Florence: Vallecchi, 2007. 5 x 6.6 cm. 464, 63 pp.

This beautiful MS was probably commissioned by the Capponi family for the wedding, in 1500, of Niccola di Andrea di Niccola Capponi and Antonia di Battista di Luigi Ridolfi. The Capponi and Ridolfi were aristocrats by birth and politicians by vocation, two historical families of Florence whose destinies were innumerable times interlaced with the history of the city, from medieval times until the end of the Ottocento. They belong to the group of moderate liberals summoned by Leopold II di Lorena to administer the Grand Duchy of Tuscany. It seems that the book, according to the style of the decorations, was created during the last decade of the 15th century, a belief that refutes a previous one that gave a date around 1462 and which was linked to the wedding of Caterina di Niccola Capponi e Tommaso di Luigi Ridolfi. The mature and advanced style of the miniatures does not seem to concord with the earlier date. It is one of the smallest prayer books that has come down to the present day, only a few centimeters each side and yet of exquisite workmanship. An extreme synthesis of an art by then at its dusk, as was the miniature in the late 15th century, this manuscript was commissioned to Monte di Giovanni, one of the greatest Florentine masters of the time. In special parchment paper, on which hot tooled gold has been applied, using the reverse procedure compared to typographical printing to give it all of the worn and vibrant naturalness of the backgrounds and the very subtle design of the highlights. Entirely bound and sewn by hand and lined in velvet like the original while the cut of the pages has gilt embossing, following the original. It comes in an elegant case with tooled silver and a commentary by Giovanna Lazzi, director of the Biblioteca Riccardiana of Florence. Limited edition of 483 copies bound in red velet. €1700  [88-8427-022-7]  (more info... )

[Florence, Museo di San Marco, ms 558]
Il messale del Beato Angelico.
Florence: Vallecchi, 2005. 43 x 59 cm, 208 pp.

Il Messale del Beato Angelico (The San Domenico Missal), preserved in the Dominican Monastery of San Marco in Florence, is an early 15th-c. Missal embellished by a selection of works by Fra Angelico and other masters of the Florentine milieu. This is the only volume in which extensive work can safely be attributed to Fra Angelico (c.1387-1466), whose frescos adorn the same walls of the convent of San Marco. In regard to provenance there are many reasons to think that the MS came out of the church of San Domenico di Fiesoli where the painter was active. It is certain that it belongs to a young period, the third decade of the Quattrocento, a period that coincides with Fra Angelico’s constant presence at the convent. This fine bibliophile edition reproduces 51 illuminated panels in full size and full color, with gold decorations. An excellent commentary, edited by Magnolia Scudieri, is provided by Maria Grazia Ciardi Dupré Dal Poggetto (history of 15th-c. Florentine miniatures), Sara Giacomelli (codicological analysis), and Maria Paola Masini (miniature technique). The volume represents a just tribute to one of the greatest artists of Florence. Limited edition of 600 copies printed on special paper produced by the Fedrigoni papermill of Verona, bound in tooled leather with brass bosses and a center rosette, after the binding of Ms. 515 in the same collection, which, for typology and chronology, is closest to the original. Please call for special OMI offer. €6900  [88-8427-022-7]  (more info... )

[Geneva, Bibliothèque de Genève, ms. lat. 357]
Beato de Ginebra.
Madrid: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2011. 16 x 25 cm, 194 pp + commentary.

Rare example of a Beato with Beneventan & Carolingian script and in a format much smaller than the usual Beato. This source is actually part 2 of Ms. 357 which also contains the Institutiones grammaticae of the Latin grammarian Priscian, not reproduced in this facsimile). The text was certainly copied in the south of Italy (probably Montecassino Abbey, Benevento) and is adorned with 65 miniatures and an initial. Limited edition of 898 copies. Artisan binding in full leather. €4575   

[Heidelberg, Universitätsbibliothek, cpg 164]
Der Heidelberger Sachsenspiegel.
Codices Selecti, CXV. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2009. 23.5 x 30 cm.

No other book has shaped the history of German law in such a way as the Mirror of Saxony. After centuries of following a solely verbal tradition of law, the Mirror of Saxony represents the first written recording of everyday life and of the approved legal customary laws which applied only to a certain geographical region (in this case Saxony). Eike von Repgow wrote and compiled this work between 1220 and 1235 in the language of his homeland in lower-Germany, thereby creating not only the most important and unequalled German book of law, but also the first work of prose in the German language. The title “Mirror” was chosen by the author according to medieval speculum literature. Like a mirror, this textbook represented a reflection of Christian world order and in the same manner Eikes “Mirror” also provided the Saxons with a view of “justice and injustice”. Limited edition of 580 copies bound in full leather. €2980 [978-3-201-01916-3] 

[Hildesheim, Dombibliothek, Ms. St. God. 1; Cologne, Schnütgen Museum, Inv. No. M694]
Albani Psalter.
Stuttgart: Verlag Müller & Schindler, 2007. 18.4 x 27.6cm. 422 pp + commentary.

A milestone in the history of book illumination the St. Alban’s Psalter is among the most significant and richly decorated Psalter MSS and one of the finest volumes of English book illumination. The English variant of the Romanesque period is frequently considered the most interesting period of Insular illumination, characterized by transition and experimentation. During the Middle Ages, the Psalms belonged to the most widely known and most popular texts of biblical literature, both in the private and in the ecclesiastical realms. They were recited daily by both clerics and the laity and used in textbooks for teaching children to read and write. Besides the psalms the St. Alban’s Psalter includes two further texts: the Life of St. Alexis and a letter of Pope Gregory the Great in which he defends the variety of images as a teaching aid. The MS was presumably commissioned by Geoffrey de Gorham, abbot of St. Alban’s, for Christina of Markyate, a close friend of his, to be executed by the scriptorium of St. Alban’s abbey near London. Christina, coming from a wealthy Anglo-Saxon family, decided at a very early stage to dedicate her life to God—she fled from an arranged marriage and withdrew to a hermitage near Markyate. There she got to know Geoffrey who became her mentor and friend, a very special relationship to which we owe this unique Psalter manuscript. The impressive picture cycle was created by the main artist of the Psalter, the “Alexis Master”. This tremendously rich sequence of scenes introducing the book is distinguished by strong body color painting, and by elegant, extremely elongated figures that are mostly shown in profile. The artist shaped the tender bodies using a complex system of deep color shades and lines of light derived from Byzantine models. The backgrounds are composed of blocks of color and include complicated architectural elements. His work is clearly influenced by Ottonian art. Blue, green and purple dominate each single composition of the English picture cycle. All miniatures are set in a golden frame, which is in turn filled with opulent meandering bands of a sheer incredible variety. The illustrations are the oldest surviving examples of book painting from the English Romanesque period. The narrative style of the pictures and the depictions in profile suggest that the artist had religious drama in mind. All 46 miniature pages bear testimony to a successful iconographic symbiosis of Anglo-Saxon, Ottonian and Byzantine art, combined with a creative urge for independent artistic expression. Deluxe limited edition of 1,125 copies bound in full leather with silver clasps. Special promotional price €8980 until February 2014. €11900  [3-87560-029-0] 

[Konya, Turkey, Mevlânâ Müzesi, Kütüphane, Ms. 68-69]
Dîvân-i Kebîr / [Jalāl al-Dīn Rūmī].
Anniversary Edition. San Mateo: Society for Understanding Mevlana, 2007. 35.2 x 47 cm, 2 vols, iv, 304, 346 pp.

The Dîvân-i Kebîr ("Great Divan") by Jalaluddin Mohammad Rumi (1207-1273) is considered one of the greatest works of Persian literature ever written. This masterpiece, an anthology of lyric poems comprised of more than 40,000 verses, comes down to us in a presentation manuscript preserved in the Mevlâna Museum in Konya Turkey. The museum is the mausoleum of Mevlana Rumi and is also the dervish lodge (tekke) of the Mevlevi order, better known as the whirling dervishes. The manuscript compiled in 1364 consists of two volumes (Mss. 68-69) written in Khorasani Farsi; it also has some Arabic, Turkish, and Greek texts. In the second volume, on page 289, Abu Bekir al Mavlavi (the man who constructed the cover) indicates that the scribe of the Dîvân was Hasan ibn-I Osman who started writing on July 2, 1367 and finished in October of 1368. He worked from the original notes taken down by the "Secretaries of the Scribe", a circle of students and friends who wrote down the poems as they came out of Rumi’s mouth. Introduction in English by Nevit Oguz Ergin. Deluxe limited edition of 200 copies bound in light brown leatherette with generous tooling and traditional fore-edge flaps. $1500 [978 18 8799130 8]  (more info... )

[Lisbon, Academia das Ciências, MS 1-A-L]
Crónica geral de Espanha de 1344.
A Coruña: Xuntanza Editorial, 2007. 31.5 x 44.5 cm, 2 vols, 648 pp + commentary.

The miniatures of this exceptional illuminated Codex, dated in 1344 and written in Galician & Portuguese, are without paragon among other Portuguese and Castillian manuscripts. The abundance and richness of its over 1300 illuminations, the ornaments, colors and gold of the initials are stunning. The beautiful gothic handwriting in two columns with 42 or 43 lines is very similar to MS “Leal Consejero” and the “Libro de la Enseñanza del Bien Cabalgar” kept at the Bibliotheque National in Paris. MS 1-A-L Blues Series, kept at the Academy of Sciences of Lisbon, has been attributed to D. Pedro, Count of Barcelos, son of King D. Dinis and great grandson of Alfonso X El Sabio. He revived and revised the cronicle of his great grandfather which had been forgotten for close to three centuries. Commentary by Luis Filipe Lindley Cintra. Limited edition of 999 copies bound in full parchment. with deluxe clamshell case. €5940   

[Lisbon, Fundaçāo Calouste Gulbenkian, inv. L.A. 135]
Gulbenkian-Stundenbuch (Libro de horas Gulbenkian).
Madrid: Ayn Ediciones, 2007. 170 x 254 cm, 364 pp + commentary.

Fouquet (1420-1481), born in Tours, is considered one of the great painters at the beginning of the Renaissance and the renovator of 15th-c. painting. He was formed in the French tradition of the international gothic and developed a new style which integrated the strong chromatic tonalities of the gothic with the perspective and volume of the Italian school as well as the naturalistic innovations of the Flemish school. He is a master painter who not only reunited Fra Angelico’s influence of volume with the French rectilinear style but united the biblical history with the history of France. This is especially shown in the images of the Epiphany where the French king is seen emulating Gaspar in the Adoration scene and the French army at the service of Christianity. The whole page miniatures are typical of Fouquet where the ornamentation is eliminated and the image occupies the whole page making it a real painting. The influence of Fra Angelico is seen clearly in the miniatures of the Annunciation and Crucifixion with very high crosses which separate the crucified from their companions and emphasize the death of Christ. Commentary by Eberhard König. Limited edition of 995 copies. €3888   

[London, British Library, Add. 11639]
The North French Hebrew Miscellany.
London: Facsimile Editions, 2005. 12.5 x 16 cm, 1494 pp + commentary.

MS Add. 11639, written and illustrated in northern France around 1280 (possibly in the environs of Troyes), is of profound importance in the history and culture of the Jewish people. Its contents are rich and varied, with altogether 84 different groups of texts, including hundreds of poems. These include the Pentateuch and Haftarot (readings from the Prophets), Song of Songs and several other biblical texts; the daily, Sabbath and festival prayers, including those for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur; Grace after Meals; Pirkei Avot (Ethics of the Fathers); assorted legal codes and formulae for agreements concerning marriage, divorce and business partnerships; an arithmetical riddle; laws governing Tefilin, Ritual Slaughter and an abundance of other texts including the Mezuzah; the Hebrew version of the Book of Tobit (the earliest extant copy known), a wide range of medieval poetry and Isaac de Corbeil's Sefer Mitsvot Katan (also the earliest known copy, composed 1277). The codex is a masterpiece of its time and place, bearing witness to the artistic quality achieved in northern France at this period. Benjamin the Scribe collaborated with artists whose skills are comparable with those makers of the finest contemporary Gothic manuscripts. The numerous full-page miniatures illustrate famous scenes from the Bible, and marginal decorations, with their constantly varying arabesques, grotesques, flowers, animals, birds and fishes, adorn virtually every folio. Commentary by Jeremy Schonfield with contributions by Diana Rowland-Smith, & Raphael Loewe. Limited edition of 500 copies, bound in full leather. $8995  [0-948223-219] 

[London, British Library, Add. Ms. 18850]
Bedford Hours.
Luzern: Faksimile-Verlag, 2007. 21 x 27 cm, 330 pp + commentary.

The Bedford Hours represent an invaluable example of aristocratic bibliophily in the history of illumination. One of the richest Book of Hours ever to have left an illuminator's workshop—every page is illustrated—it became famous all over the world. The book contains an overwhelming abundance of biblical scenes, decorated with 1250 elaborate medallions, 38 large-format miniatures, finely executed in gold leaf, brush gold and frequently also with silver. Miniatures from the Bedford Hours, such as the Ark of Noah or the Creation, are among the most frequently represented examples of the creativity which marked the first decades of the 15th century. The same period also gave birth to such wonderful works as the Master of Game of Gaston Pheobus and the Belles Heures of the Duke of Berry. It was the pinnacle of Gothic illumination, with new ideas of Flemish realism already visible on the horizon. Although the artist of the Bedford Hours was among the leading and most prolific painters of his day, his identity has sadly remained a mystery. His nickname goes back to the Duke of England who has long been thought to have commissioned the work: John of Lancaster (1389-1435), Duke of Bedford and younger brother of the English king Henry V. The illuminator of the this Book of Hours thus entered art history under the title of Bedford Master, a name synonymous with high quality painting and luxurious opulence in books. Commentary by Eberhard König. Binding in red velvet with gilded clasps. sFr18400    (more info... )

[London, British Library, Add. ms. 18851]
Breviario de Isabel la Católica.
Barcelona: M. Moleiro Editor, 2010. 16 x 23 cm, 1046 pp + commentary.

The Isabella Breviary is one of the most highly prized treasures of the British Library. The Breviary was conceived of as the most luxurious Flemish breviary; six masters worked on this codex and the originality and impact of its miniatures make it a unique work. A breviary has more texts than a book of hours, thus offering the illuminators a wider range of themes, more artistic license and therefore a great image variety. The main painter of the Breviary is the Master of the Dresden Prayerbook, an artist remarkable for the narrative expressiveness of his images and his ability to breath life and movement into his scenes. His skillful portrayal of gestures and facial expressions, underlining the main action of each episode is astounding. Gerard Horenbout, also known as the Master of James IV of Scotland, is the second greatest illuminator of the Breviary. He was the first Flemish illuminator to incorporate elements characteristic of the Renaissance into his miniatures. His brilliant use of color and masterful representation of textures and fabrics are dazzling. Some of the most important miniatures in the codex are the magnificient work of Gerard David. The exhuberant marginal decorations in the Breviary deserve special mention. The MS was given to Isabella the Catholic to commemorate the double marriage of her children, John and Joanna, to the children of the Emperor Maximilian of Austria and Mary of Burgundy, Margaret and Philip. The Breviary is of great historical importance not only for its artistic context but because it reflects the great political unrest of late 15th-c. Europe, a time when royal marriages meant international political alliances and territorial expansion. Limited numbered edition of 987 copies, bound in embossed leather.  

[London, British Library, Royal MS 11 E XI]
Music for King Henry. BL Royal MS 11 E XI. Commentary by Nicolas Bell. Performing Edition by David Skinner.
London: The Folio Society, 2009. 35 x 50 cm. 36, 120 pp, audio CD.

Of all the courtly arts practiced by King Henry VIII, music was undoubtedly his greatest passion. As well as being a talented harpist and composer, Henry was a great patron of the musical arts in Europe, and his reign heralded a golden age in English choral music. Henry employed 58 full-time court musicians, more than any other monarch before or since, including a chapel choir that was said to be “more divine than human”. Many of today’s great English musical institutions such as the choirs of Christ Church, Oxford and King’s College, Cambridge were founded during his reign. Several manuscripts survive to testify to Henry’s love of music, but the most important is the Royal Choirbook, now British Library Royal MS 11 E XI. This magnificent collection of motets was presented to the 27-year-old Henry and Catherine of Aragon in 1518. It is exceptional for the sheer size and luxury of its production, its exquisite and ingenious heraldic illuminations, and not least, its personal significance to Henry. The Royal Choirbook was commissioned and designed by Petrus de Opitiis, an Italian merchant, and his son Benedictus, a talented organist who hoped to gain a position at court. Together they created a magnificent large-format volume of 6 motets. Composed by Benedictus and a musician named Sampson, these motets were written to appeal to the king on the deepest possible level, reflecting both his royal status and his dearest wish: the birth of a male heir. The Choirbook opens with a sumptuous frontispiece, rich in symbolism carefully chosen to celebrate Henry’s lineage. It depicts a rose bush with 3 large blooms. One is the red rose of Lancaster, while the red-and-white rose depicts the union of the houses of York and Lancaster. The crowned rose represents King Henry himself. A pomegranate tree, shown blooming in the garden of England, is the symbol of Catherine of Aragon, while a daisy and a marigold represent Henry’s two sisters, Mary and Margaret. As well as being a breathtaking piece of heraldic art, the frontispiece ingeniously incorporates the texts of the first two motets, Salve radix and Psallite felices, with Henry’s name highlighted in gold leaf. Deluxe facsimile edition limited to 500 copies, in quarter buckram with vegetable parchment boards, with gold and colored foils, edge-gilding and slipcase. With CD recording by the “Alamire Consort” directed by Dr. David Skinner. $845  978 6000 0587 0  (more info... )

[London, British Library, Yates Thompson ms. 29]
Libro d’ore di Bonaparte Ghislieri.
Modena: Franco Cosimo Panini, 2007. 14.5 x 20.7 cm. 274 pp + commentary.

This highly sophisticated Book of Hours was produced in 1503 at the behest of Bonaparte Ghislieri, a member of an important Bolognese family. In commissioning this codex Ghislieri wanted to bring together several of the most famous artists of the period, each one of whom was called upon to create a full-page miniature. The intention was to offer the best miniature anthology that the Bologna school of illumination could produce in those years. Thus we see a succession of works by the likes of Amico Aspertini with his Adoration of the Shepherds, Perugino with his Saint Sebastian, Costa with King David and his Lyre, Francia with his Saint Jerome and, probably, Matteo da Milano, to whom the Annunciation is attributed. The admirable decoration forming the borders of the miniatures should also be mentioned, abounding in classical references, with several clear borrowings from the decoration of the Domus Aurea. Bologna was also the home of the scribe, Pierantonio Sallando, who taught grammar at the University of Bologna and was to become a famous professor of writing. The codex passed from the Ghislieris to the Albani family of Urbino, where it is documented in the 18th century; the following century it reached England, where it was purchased by Henry Yates Thompson in 1897. Since 1941 it has been kept in the British Library. Limited numbered edition of 980 copies, bound in kidskin featuring gold embossing applied dry and corner guards and clasps in solid silver. €8800   

[London, British Library, Yates Thompson ms. 36]
La divina commedia di Alfonso d’Aragona.
Modena: Franco Cosimo Panini, 2006. 25.7 x 37 cm. 2 vols, 396, 340 pp.

Richly decorated with over 100 splendid miniatures and featuring illuminated initial letters at the beginning of each canticle, this Codex was produced in Tuscany around the middle of the 15th century at the request of an illustrious client, the king of Naples, Alfonso of Aragon, known as the Magnanimous. The king, an enlightened patron and sensitive humanist, in an effort to affirm the predominance of his kingdom over the other Italian states, transformed Naples into a lively artistic and cultural center. A sophisticated bibliophile, he looked upon manuscripts as precious treasures and, having accumulated an extensive library in Spain, wanted to augment it in Naples with Italian, Latin and Greek texts, obtaining precious miniature codices through the good offices of the scholarly Guiniforte Barzizza. The sumptuous collection of miniatures in the Divine Comedy is the work of two different artists, although the assignment to decorate the three canticles was probably given to a single artist, identified as the Siennese, Lorenzo di Pietro, known as il Vecchietta. It was this first illuminator who decorated all the capital letters and the scenes of Hell and Purgatory, executed between 1442 and 1450. The decoration of Paradise, has been attributed to another Siennese, Giovanni di Paolo, an artist immersed in a dream-like, spiritual dimension which he translated in his miniatures into unreal, fairy-tale atmospheres sharing three common characteristics: the structure of the universe, represented by the azure brightness of the sky and the celestial spheres, usually blazing with gold; the all-consuming loveliness of the countryside, inspired by the beauty of the Tuscan landscape to the south of Sienna and frequently clearly recognizable; and the unifying presence in the majority of the miniatures of the coupled figures of Dante and Beatrice. Limited edition of 750 copies, bound in silk velvet over wood boards and featuring decorations, gilded silver and enamel work. €8750   

[Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, res. 36]
Notitia dignitatum. El libro de las claves del poder politico.
Barcelona: Liber Millennium, 2009. 20.8 x 28.8 cm, 336 pp + commentary.

Limited edition of 995 copies, bound in leather. €4750   

[Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, res. 51]
Evangeliario de Carlos de Angulema / Prayer Book of Charles of Angoulême.
Salamanca: CM Editores, 2010. 16 x 23 cm, 336 pp + commentary.

Illuminated gospel book commissioned by Claude de France and King Francis I of France. Commentary by Josefina Planas. Limited bibliophile edition of 375 copies bound in goatskin with gold stamping. €4320   

[Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, vitr. 14-1]
Beato Emilianense de la Biblioteca Nacional.
Burgos: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2007 25 x 35 cm. c.610 + commentary.

MS vitr. 14-1. preserved in the Biblioteca Nacional in Madrid, is considered the oldest of the surviving Beatus sources, probably copied between 930-950 in the southeast of the kingdom of Léon. Although it was housed in the Monasterio of San Millán de la Cogolla in the 12th and 13th centuries, its miniatures are attributed to another scriptorium. It is the only Beato, together with the San-Sever MS, that contains the text of the oldest commentary version of the Beato, dated 776. According to José Camón Aznar it is strongly autochthonous and is characterized by an elementality so intense that borders on exoticism. Once having around 60 miniatures, only 27 survive (there are indications of the cutting out of at least 30 miniatures). Commentary by Rosa Regàs and Peter Klein. Limited edition of 898 copies bound in leather with brass clasps, with case.  

[Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, vitr. 25-3]
Libro de horas de los retablos.
Barcelona: Liber Millennium, 2005. 16 x 23 cm, 400 pp + commentary.

Also known as the Missal of Fernández de Córdoba, this MS is a magnificent example of a Book of Hours in the Roman tradition. Such books in general fell under such suspicion that they ended up being banned by the Inquisition. This edition is a paradigmatic case: the codex, property at the time it was created of a person called Teresa, was censored and thus appears expurgated, precisely in one of the most popular prayers to Mary. The crossed-out text is a historical document that bears irrefutable witness to the dangers inherent in dogmatism and intolerance. Such testimonial proof would be worthy of publication itself, but this volume is also a work of art. It is made of the finest vellum and highly refined pigments; its traditional techniques are excellent and its decoration and illustrations are exquisite. The MS is a clear exponent of the finest international style of the 15th c. The originality of the miniatures in the form of altarpieces is a special feature of this book, which contains hundreds of ornamental designs within the pages of text, such as butterflies, birds, dragons, putti, and the like. Equally beautiful is its current binding in repoussé leather, inlaid with gold and cobalt. Limited edition of 550 copies. €4550   

[Madrid, Bibl. Nacional, vitr. 25-5; Berlin, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin; Philadelphia Museum of Art]
Libro de horas de los reyes Católicos.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2009. 11 x 15 cm, 650 pp + commentary.

This codex, also known as Voustre Demeure, appears to have been presented to Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain by the Emperor Maximilian, on the occasion of the double marriage of their children, Margaret and Philip, to the Spanish rulers’ offspring, John and Joan. The facsimile edition represents the restoration of the book’s original composition, bringing together folios currently found in the collections of the Biblioteca Nacional in Madrid, the Staatliche Museen, Berlin and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The MS consists of 650 pages, every one illustrated and illuminated in gold and silver by master Flemish painters. Altogether there are 87 large-format miniatures and 583 pages embellished with quarter-page decorations in which a variety of animals, plants and insects are represented. Stylistically the work points to the master credited with the Book of Hours of Marie of Burgundy, the master of the Dresden prayer book, Lieven van Lathem, Nicolas Spierinc and Simon Marmion, praised for their mastery of trompe-l’oeil effects in the ornamental borders of the books they illuminated, a lavish hand with decorative elements and the large number of extremely sophisticated iconographic resources they brought to their tasks. All of these aspects make this book of hours one of the most significant works of art produced during the waning of the Middle Ages. Commentary by Eberhard König. €7500    (more info... )

[Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, vitr. 25-6]
Tractatus de ludo scacorum.
Burgos: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2007. 11.5 x 17.5 cm, 100 pp.

1430–40. The Play of Chess (Tractatus de ludo Scacorum) by Jacobus de Cessolis - Bohemia. The manuscript contains the Latin text of Liber de moribus hominum et officiis nobilium sive super ludum scaccorum (Book of the customs of men and the duties of nobles or the Book of Chess), written by Jacobus de Cessolis at the beginning of the 14th century. A moral treatise that uses the game of chess as its frame; an allegory of society, the different pieces and their movements have a moral or military meaning. A very widely read work. Probably acquired in Italy, it came with the assets of the Chapter of Toledo Cathedral. Limited numbered edition of 898 copies. 978-84-935459-4-9 

[Modena, Bibl. Estense Univ., est. 28 (=alfa M.5.9)]
Herbolaire o Grant Herbier.
Castel San Pietro: Trident Editore, 2008. 20 x 28 cm. 340 pp + commentary

L’Herbolaire is the most refined of the two herbariums preserved at the Biblioteca Estense Universitaire of Modena (the other one is the Tractatus de Herbis). The French text in gothic bastard is the anonymous translation of one of the most important medieval books attributed to Plateario the medical doctor of the Salernitana School. The miniatures are the product of a very refined hand and are very close to reality, especially the herbs. “I semplice”, the plants and medical remedies treated by the author, number c.500 and are arranged in alphabetical order.There are also other scenes which depict different animals and peasants working in the fields. Limited edition of 299 copies bound in full leather. €4600   

[Modena, Bibl. Estense Univ., it. 1221 (=alfa F.9.9)]
Composizioni profane. Poesie musicali per le feste di corte.
Ars Illuminandi. Modena: Il Bulino, [in prep]. Oblong, 17 x 12 cm, 180 pp + commentary.

Deluxe full-color facsimile of one of the most beautiful Italian songbooks of the Renaissance. A virtual anthology of strambotti, with 82 examples. The poetry, with Greek, Roman, Jewish, Christian, medieval and Petrarchan references, clearly points to the high humanistic milieu in which it was compiled. Deluxe leather binding with handsome tooling, following the design of the original extant binding. €790  

[Modena, Bibl. Estense Univ., lat. 22 (=alfa K.7.2)]
Officium beatae mariae virginis - Il libro d’ore di Barbara d’Austria.
Castel San Pietro: Trident Editore, 2007. 12 x 17 cm. 332 pp + commentary.

This beautiful richly illuminated Book of Hours from the 16th-c. with 17 large format minatures and 328 highly decorated pages was probably executed by a student of the French master Jean Bourdichon. It has the sigla "A.E.I.O.U"—Austria est imperare orbi universo—the motto of the Austrian House introduced by Federico III and the initials "P.K." which might stand for Philippus Karolus, the monogram of Filippo the Beautiful of Austria united to that of his son Carlo V. There are 2 full-page miniatures with gold frame introducing the Office of the Virgin and Penitentiary Psalms. The borders show a naturalic vegetation with red and imaginary animals, putti, musical angels and anthropomorphic figures. This fauna, derived from the repertoire of the late-gothic French illuminatiors, has precise symbolic meanings. The fantastic and montrous creatures personify the diabolic; butterflies and birds are frequently found, the first one as a symbol of the soul which raises from a terrestial plane to a celestial one. The crane, like all animals of long neck and beak, is related to malignant creatures. All the other miniatures are in an arch-formed window with gold borders. The MS was part of the endowment of Barbara d'Austria, Archduchess of Austria, daugther of Emperor Ferdinand I (brother of Carlo V) and Anna of Bohemia and Hungary. In 1565 she married Alfonso II d'Este, Duke of Ferrara. After an earthquake in 1570/1571 Barbara d'Austria dedicated her efforts and personal resources to help the orphans of the “Conservatorio delle orfane di Sto. Barbara”. She died of tuberculosis in 1572 at the age of 33. Limited edition of 300 copies bound in velvet after the original. €3200   

[Modena, Bibl. Estense Univ., lat. 74 (=alfa Q.9.31)]
Officium beatae mariae virginis del Cardinale Ippolito I d’Este.
Castel San Pietro: Trident Editore, 2008. 14 x 24 cm. 278 pp + commentary.

It is believed that this refined 15th-c. MS with 12 large-format miniatures and 146 decorated initials and written in archaic Latin belonged to the Cardinal Ippolito I d'Este. The Cardinal was born in 1479, the son of the Duke of Modena & Ferrara and Princess Eleonora of Aragon. He had a meteoric ecclesiastical career becoming a Cardinal at the age of 14 and Archbishop of Milan at 18. The wedding of his brother Alfonso I with Lucrecia Borgia in 1501 gave him the title of Arciprete di S. Pietro which allowed him to reside in Rome. Pope Pio III named him Bishop of Ferrara. The Cardinal, Mecenate of Lodovico Ariosto, died in Ferrara in 1520. The miniatures of the MS, following the style of the Lombard School, are presented inside a gold frame bordered with red, blue or red and blue. They show Saints with long hair and episodes of the life of the Virgin or Jesus. Its beautiful initials have been executed in gold with decortive flowers. Limited edition of 300 copies bound in full leather after the original. €2500   

[Modena, Bibl. Estense Univ., lat. 842 (=alfa R.7.3)]
Libro d’ore del Maestro di Modena. Officium Beatae Mariae Virginis.
Ars Illuminandi. Modena: Il Bulino, 2006. 15 x 21 cm, 544 pp + commentary.

The Lombard MS, dated 1390 and illuminated by the Master of Modena Hours (who takes his name from this exemplary codex), comes from the rich collection of the Marquis Obizzi del Catajo and has belonged to the Estense library since 1817. It features 28 full-page illuminations, of which 15 have vegetation patterned borders and 21 have illustrated initial letters. The text, with indexed headings, is in rounded Gothic script. As is typical of prayerbooks, the first part begins with the calendar, followed by the texts of the prayers, accompanied by splendid illuminations representing important moments in the lives of the Blessed Virgin and Jesus and pictures of the saints. The codex is known as one of the masterpieces of Lombardian illuminated manuscripts and among those of the golden period of the International Gothic. The Master of the Hours Book of Modena has been traced to the workshop of Giovannino de Grassi, author of other wonderful codices for the Visconti court. Despite obvious references of this codex to the main school, the Master of the Hours Book of Modena reveals his own originality in his brush technique and background decorations, in his surprising elegance of line, and in the lovely gentleness of the feminine figures. Of considerable importance is the beautiful and sumptuous 16th c. pink silk binding with embroidered decorative borders along the spine and on the sides, in gold, silver and coloured silk thread. A framed bust of the Virgin Mary is embroidered on the front cover in the center, while the coat-of-arms of the presumed owner is embroidered in the center on the back. Limited edition of 499 copies, bound in silk with colored embroidery, after the original. Special transparent case. €7200 [88-86251-65-3]  (more info... )

[Modena, Bibl. Estense Univ., lat. 842 (=alfa R.7.3)]
Libro d’ore del Maestro di Modena. Officium Beatae Mariae Virginis.
Ars Illuminandi. Modena: Il Bulino, 2006. 15 x 21 cm, 544 pp + commentary.

(same as above but with plexiglass slipcase) €4800 [88-86251-65-3]  (more info... )

[Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, cod. arab. 1112]
Das Goldkoran / The Golden Koran.
Codices Selecti, CXVIII. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2011. 18 x 26 cm, 368 pp + commentary.

Deluxe full-color facsimile of Bayerische Staatsbibliothek ms. Cod. arab. 1112, produced in Iran or Iraq in the 11th century. The manuscript, from the school of the calligrapher Ibn al-Bawwāb, is written in black naskhi script on gilt paper. Edition of 480 numbered copies. €5480  

[Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, clm 815]
The Golden Munich Psalter.
Lucerne: Quaternio Verlag, 2011. 19.5 x 28 cm,, 2 vols, 232, 360pp.

The Bavarian State Library is home to the Golden Munich Psalter, a prayer book featuring unrivalled wealth of illustrations: 91 full-page miniatures on a brilliant gold background. Unique, elaborately detailed cycles depict stories from the Old and New Testaments, making this psalter a true illustrated bible. The calendar at the beginning is decorated with 24 medallion miniatures. Decorative initials, both historiated and inhabited, in color and gold leaf, as well as line fillers in red and blue on all of the pages, complete the impression of opulence. The Golden Munich Psalter is probably an early 13th-century collaborative work by three masters from Oxford. It is not merely its lavish content that makes the psalter so fascinating but also the fact that the manuscript is an example of what was then a new form of artistic expression, a transition from the Romanesque to the Gothic. Provenance: It is unclear when the psalter left England, but it was probably before Henry VIII’s dissolution of the monasteries (after 1538). The ex libris inscription of Maximilian I, Duke of Bavaria (1573–1651), is evidence that it was part of the inventory at the Munich Hofbibliothek, or court library. Commentary in Ger-Eng by Nigel J. Morgan and Carolin Schreiber. Limited edition of 680 copies bound in suede with two brass clasps. €6680   

[Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, clm 4456]
Sakramentar Heinrichs II
Munich: Faksimile-Verlag, 2010. 24.2 x 29.5 cm, 718 pp + commentary.

The Sacramentary of Henry II is one of the last highlights of Ottonian illumination. A great-grandson of the founder of the dynasty of Saxon emperors, Henry II ordered this book in Regensburg for the ceremonial celebration of the masses, while he still occupied the throne. Like all manuscripts of its kind, the Sacramentary of Henry II contains the prayers said by the priest or bishop when celebrating mass. Richly decorated with gold and silver initials in the Ottonian style, these texts are inserted after an extensive picture cycle, full-page ornamental texts, and a calendar in chrysographic script. The illuminated manuscript opens like fireworks introducing a big celebration: the plates of the months are followed by a coronation picture and a picture of Henry II on the throne, expressing the very essence of how the last Saxon emperor saw an ideal rulership. In addition to other luxury pages, Gregory the Great is honored with an imposing author’s picture. After a concluding page with the Lamb of God, the Sacramentary begins – no longer written and painted on vellum but on fine sheep’s parchment. €26500   

[Naples, Biblioteca Nazionale, Ms. I.B.51
La flora: Horae beatae mariae virginis.
Torino: UTET, 2008. 13.5 x 21.5 cm, 736 pp + commentary.

This splendid Book of Hours from the 15th century was dedicated to Charles VIII, king of France (1483-1498) who probably had it among his possessions. The MS is richly ornamented, with a marvelous variety of decorative elements, flowers for the major part. The facsimile, a very high quality one, displays faithfully all the variety of colors and perfection of the designs. “La Flora” shows 28 miniatures, in large format, the work of a French master but the codex, in its global and organic context, belongs to the Flemish School of Ghent and Bruges, by which, together with the famous Breviario Grimani, are part of its major works. The name “Flora” (original title: Horae beatae mariae virginis) has been attributed to scholars of this MS for the outstanding richness and variety of the floral elements. The original is preserved in the Biblioteca Nazionale di Napoli and the facsimile has been made possible by the sponsorship of the Minister of Cultural Treasures. Limited edition of 664 copies bound in leather, in wooden box.  

[New York, Jewish Theological Seminary]
Prato Haggadah.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2006. 14 x 21 cm, 160 pp + commentary.

The Prato Haggadah (Spain, c.1300) is an unfinished illuminated MS of 85 leaves, written on fine calf parchment. Fols. 1–53 are written in a square Sephardic script and fols. 54–68 are written in a square Italo-Ashkenazic script, using a different ink. The illumination of 30 pages is virtually complete. 58 are unfinished, with preparatory drawings and possibly some gesso and color, 50 have text only and the remaining pages are blank. Many of the pages have illuminated initial word panels, comparable to illuminated initials in Christian or secular manuscripts. Throughout, illustrations accompany the text, such as the depiction of the four sons, and illustrations of matza and maror (bitter herbs). Preparatory drawings depicting the story of Noah and the flood appear at the end of the manuscript. Margins are replete with fanciful drawings of hybrid creatures, imaginary birds, drolleries and climbing vines. The codex is especially fascinating because it demonstrates the making of a manuscript in the Middle Ages, enabling us to view its illumination after the text was written: the preparatory drawings, the laying down of gesso in order to cushion the gold leaf, the application of gold and silver leaf, and ultimately the application of pigments. The skill of the artist is of a very high order, both in the preparatory drawings and in the completed pages, whose brilliant colors look as fresh today as when they were applied. (adapted from description by JTS). Limited edition of 100 copies. €5000   

[New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M.44]
La vida de Jesuchristo en imágines (vie de Jésus Christ): manuscrito francés de finales de siglo XII, M.44 de la Pierpont Morgan Library de Nueva York. Estudio introductorio, Juan Vicente Garcia Marsilla.
Valencia: Scriptorium, 2005. 35 x 25 cm, 2 vols, 35, 128 pp.

Deluxe full-color facsimile of manuscript M.44, a unique picturebook of the life of Christ. Contains 30 full-page miniatures in the style of those on the oldest stained glass windows in the Cathedral of Chartres, illuminated in Northern France, perhaps Corbie, c.1175. Limited edition 250 copies printed on natural lambskin parchment with binding with reproduction ivory inset. Commentary by Juan A. Vicente Garcia Marsilla (few copies remaining). $5882   

[New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M.399]
Das Da Costa-Stundenbuch [standard edition].
Codices Selecti, CXVI. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2010. 12.5 x 17,2 cm. 776 pp + commentary.

The Da Costa Hours is one of the first manuscripts to have been created by Simon Bening. The coat of arms on folio 1v has been ascribed to a member of the Sá family from Portugal. The emblem which has been painted over the coat of arms, however, refers to the man after whom this particular book of hours has come to be named: Don Alvaro da Costa, armorer and treasurer to Manuel I, the King of Portugal who ruled from 1495 to 1521 and founded the Portuguese colonial empire. According to a history of the Da Costa family the manuscript was given as a present by Pope Leo X to King Manuel I who subsequently passed it on to Don Alvaro. Bening’s profound knowledge of pictorial language was enormously important for the way he decorated the Da Costa Hours. The incredible number of miniatures required a large number of compositional models. For instance, the codex required two cycles of pictures illustrating the Passion of Christ; the first 8 for the office of the Passion and a further 4 to depict the Passion by the Evangelists. The Evangelists appear twice, the first time as authors of the passion texts and then again in conjunction with their symbols. To meet these iconographic and compositional requirements Bening drew upon models dating back to the time of Charles the Bold, the Last Duke of Burgundy, for example, by painters such as the Viennese Master of Mary of Burgundy. Yet Bening didn’t simply copy them: by completely redeveloping this material he created a special mastery which not even the original creators could have dreamed of. Bening’s impressive landscape panoramas are captured in the 12 full-page calendar miniatures which are probably some of the most famous and best examples of book illumination. The codex remained in the possession of the Da Costa family for four centuries. It eventually was sold by the London-based antiquariat Bernard Quaritch to George C. Thomas of Philadelphia, later to be sold to John Pierpont Morgan in 1910. Commentary by Gregory T. Clark. Limited edition bound in full leather. €9980  

[Santa Monica, J. Paul Getty Museum, Ms. Ludwig V 1]
Das Sakramentar von Beauvais [standard edition].
Codices Selecti, CXVII. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2011. 17.8 x 23.2 cm, 20 pp + commentary.

The Sacramentary of Beauvais in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum is one of a pair of lavish liturgical manuscripts almost certainly produced in northern France by an Italian scribe, who also may have illuminated the volumes. Only ten leaves of the original book have survived, those leaves clearly preserved because of their beauty and the generous use of gold and—more remarkably—silver. Included among the surviving leaves are three pages of text written in gold on painted purple grounds, a stunning full-page Crucifixion scene and a nearly full-page initial in gold and silver, as well as smaller painted initials. The complete manuscript was known to the 17th-c. canons of Beauvais cathedral as the “Missal of Roger of Champagne,” and indeed, the sacramentary most probably was created at the behest of Roger of Champagne (d. 1016), the first count-bishop of Beauvais who was named in an inscription on an early binding. Roger was renowned for having endowed the cathedral with precious goods, including the sacramentary and two other sumptuous liturgical books. Limited edition of 444 copies with parchment cover; deluxe slipcase covered in leather. €1380  

[Santa Monica, J. Paul Getty Museum, Ms. Ludwig V 1]
Das Sakramentar von Beauvais [deluxe edition].
Codices Selecti, CXVII. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2011. 17.8 x 23.2 cm, 20 pp + commentary.

(Same as above but special edition of 111 copies reproduced in 23k gold and silver) €2480  

[New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M.399]
Das Da Costa-Stundenbuch [deluxe edition].
Codices Selecti, CXVI. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2010. 12.5 x 17,2 cm. 776 pp + commentary.

Same as above but special edition of 99 copies with binding in green velour leather with two silver clasps, and red leather case. €13800  

[New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M.711]
Hainricus Sacramentary (Pierpont Morgan Library, New York, MS. M711).
Codices Selecti, CX. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2005. 17.2 x 24.2 cm, 296 pp + commentary.

The "Hainricus Sacramentary"—consisting of calendar, gradual-antiphonary, sequentiary & sacramentary—was written and illuminated at the Abbey of Weingarten, a Benedictine house in Württemberg, Germany, ca. 1225-1250. Under Welf IV and his wife Judith, Weingarten became an imperial abbey. The manuscript was commissioned by Hainricus sacristan, a monk at Weingarten Abbey, who is represented on the cover and in 4 miniatures (it has been suggested that Hainricus may have been also the illuminator, but no documentary evidence has been found). Decoration: 5 full-page miniatures, 2 illuminated text pages, 24 calendar medallions, 35 historiated initials. Music: the gradual-antiphonary and sequentiary parts of the manuscript are notated with non-diastematic neumes; the rite accords with the Hirsau tradition. Limited edition of 280 copies bound in full leather with clamshell box. €10500 [3-201-01746-9]  (more info... )

[New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M.945 & 917]
Das Stundenbuch der Katharina von Kleve.
Munich: Faksimile-Verlag, 2009. 13 x 19.1 cm, 714 pp + commentary.

Around the year 1430 artists in Utrecht—or perhaps also in Nijmegen—produced a marvellous book of hours for the Duchess of Guelders, a book that both in terms of volume and quality is unmatched even in the later period of book painting. A grandchild of John the Fearless, Duke of Burgundy, Catherine of Cleves was the addressee for whom the namesake master decorated this 714-page manuscript book with 157 miniatures. The work’s high quality and enormous iconographic variety lead us to assume that the Master of Catherine of Cleves must have been familiar with the art of the van Eyck brothers and with French illumination of his own day. On the other hand, he developed his own unmistakeable style which was to influence illuminators after him, not only in the Netherlands. Neither Willem Vrelant nor the Master of Mary of Burgundy are conceivable without this greatest of all Dutch book painters. A book like a picture gallery—157 half- and full-page miniatures with opulent frames—make the Hours of Catherine of Cleves the largest coherent picture gallery of Dutch art from the 15th century. Many of these pictures are not only extraordinary in terms of form and content but also unique in the truest meaning of the word: nowhere else in late medieval art do we find parallels or correspondences to this work. Some of the impressive depictions, such as Purgatory and Hell, anticipate themes from the works of Hieronymus Bosch. And we even discover elements that hint at Dutch genre painting of later centuries. The margins of this MS are like an additional book within the book, giving the work a particular cheerfulness, for instance on the page where St. Bartholomew is framed with fresh pastries and crispy pretzels. Commentary by a team of scholar under the direction of Eberhard König. Limited edition of 980 copies, bound in brown leather with gilded clasp and generous blindstamping in the style of a historical binding from Utrecht. €9980   

[New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M. 1044]
Gaston Phoebus—The Master of Game.
Luzern: Faksimile-Verlag, 2007. 28.6 x 38.5 cm, 256 pp + commentary.

Gaston III, Count of Foix and Béarn (called "Phoebus"—after the Sun god— because of his golden blond hair) composed his Livre de chasse between 1387-1389. Organized in 4 parts and written in a clear narrative voice, the work not only depicts the multi-faceted forms of hunting, but presents an impressive knowledge of the natural sciences—long before the age of modern empirical science—with detailed observations on the various animal species. Livre de chasse has become the most famous hunting book of the middle ages (altogether 46 copies of the work have survived). The Pierpont Morgan Library's presentation manuscript—created in the atelier of the "Master of Bedford" and commissioned by Philip the Bold (1342-1404)—is one of the most beautiful of them all, with its clear French "textura" hand (written in a Gasconian dialect), 87 precious miniatures and 126 large-format initials. Commentary by Yves Christe, William Voelke and François Avril. Limited edition of 980 copies bound in quarter vellum. sFr10800    (more info... )

[New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M. 1166]
The Prayer Book of Claude de France.
Lucerne: Quaternio Verlag, 2009. 4.9 x 6.9 cm, 2 vols, 104 pp + commentary.

Created around 1517 in Tour, the Prayer Book of Claude de France is a painted gem, illustrated throughout, one of the most famous manuscripts made for the royal court of France. The personalized prayer book of the French queen Claude de France enchants us especially by its delicate paintings in a charmingly small format of 49 x 69 mm, and even more so by the unusual wealth of illustration it contains. The namesake master of Claude de France composed a continuous round of full-page and partly even double-page miniatures, surmounted by a small field of text. And even these inscribed areas are now and then cut open to show even more of the picture: a coat flattering wildly in the wind, an emphatic gesture with the arm, or wide landscape vistas to additionally enliven the compositions.. When opening the manuscript, one is amazed by the small-sized work of a completely different master: an ex-libris with the distinctive stroke of Pablo Picasso. This ex-libris was made especially for Picasso’s gallery owner in New York. Commentary in Ger-Eng by Roger Wieck and Cynthia J. Brown. Limited edition of 980 copies bound in burgundy red velvet with golden clasps in the form of a fleur-de-lis; decorative case in leather with magnifying glass by Eschenbach Optics. €1980   

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale]
Le petit Ptolomeo. Cosmografía de Claudio Ptolomeo.
Burgos: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2005. 14.5 x 26.7 cm, 600 pp.

Deluxe facsimile of the only Ptolomeo easy to hold in the hands. Limited edition of 898 copies.  

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, allem. 113]
Splendor solis. Tratado de alquimia.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2009. 21 x 30 cm. 100 pp + commentary.

The Splendor Solis, an important treatise on alchemy written at the dawn of modern science, consists of text accompanied by a series of 22 elaborate images set in ornamental borders and niches similar in style to the decorative borders used in book of hours of the period. The book's symbolic process follows the alchemical death and rebirth of the King, followed by a series of 7 flasks, each associated with one of the planets. Within the flasks a process is shown involving the transformation of bird and animal symbols into the Queen and King, represented by white and red pigment. Elements of the work can be found in the Pretiossisimum Donum Dei sequence (15th c.) and the writings of Saloman Trismosin, possibly the teacher of Paracelsus. MS allem. 113 of the Bibliothèque Nationale—the basis of this deluxe facsimile edition—is a beautiful parchment manuscript of 50 folios, sumptuously illuminated in gold and silver; the MS is one of just seven early surviving mss sources of this fascinating text. List of illuminations: 1) The Arms of the art; 2) Philosopher with flask; 3) The Knight on the double fountain; 4) Solar King and Lunar Queen meet; 5) Miners excavating hill; 6) Philosophers beside tree; 7) Drowning King; 8) Ressurrection out of the swamp; 9) Hermaphrodite with egg; 10) Severing the head of the King; 11) Boiling the body in the vessel; 12) Saturn – Dragon and child; 13) Jupiter – Three birds; 14) Mars – Triple-headed bird; 15) Sun – Triple-headed dragon; 16) Venus – Peacock's Tail; 17) Mercury – The White Queen; 18) Moon – The Red King; 19) The dark sun; 20) Children at play; 21) Women washing clothes; 22) Sun rising over the city. Limited edition of 999 copies. €4000   

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, arabe 2964]
Kitâb al-Diryâq (Thériaque de Paris).
Sansepolcro: Aboca Edizioni, 2009. 28.5 x 37 cm, 2 vols, 72 , 272 pp

The most important surviving manuscript of the Kitâb al-Diryâq, painted in the “Mosul School” style developed in northern Iraq in the late 12th to early 13th century under the patronage of the Zangid dynasty (1127-1222). Another copy of the work is preserved in the Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, Vienna, however, the Paris copy—the basis of this facsimile edition—is in better condition. Commentary: Oleg Grabar, Francoise Micheau, Jaclynne Kerner, Anna Caiozzo, Marie Genèvieve Guesdon. Deluxe limited edition of 999 copies, bound in goatskin with gold stamping; slipcase covered with red silk with embossed reproduction from the MS. €2980    (more info... )

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, fr. 166]
Biblia moralizada de los Limbourg.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2010. 29 x 41.5 cm.

The Dukes of Berry and Burgundy were the patrons of the Limbourg Brothers, the most important book illuminators of the 15th century and precursors of Jan van Eyck. Their influence on book illumination was felt in all of Northern Europe. From surviving documents it is known that in February 1402 Paul and Johan Limbourg were contracted by Philip to work for four years exclusively on illuminating a bible. This may or may not have been the Bible Moralisée, Ms. fr. 166 in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris, which art art historians consider an early work by the Limbourg brothers. With 800 illustrations in a single codex, 513 miniatures by the Limbourg Brothers illuminated with gold and silver (plus 287 illustrations by Jean Fouquet and other outstanding artists), the “Bible moralisée” is the most abundantly illustrated manuscript of the Limbourg Brothers. €7000   

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, fr. 616]
Livre de la chasse, by Gaston Phoebus.
Barcelona: Moleiro, [in prep—2016] 28 x 38 cm, 2 vols, 275, 76 pp.

Livre de la Chasse by Gaston Phoebus is one of the most precious gems ever produced in the medieval workshops of French book illuminators. Its 87 miniatures are mostly painted on ”stencil pattern” backgrounds and are unique in book painting, most of them richly embellished with gold. They present animals and lively hunting scenes with an unequalled sense of nature. The MS enjoyed great popularity also for its text, which is written in excellent French, and its treatise on hunting. The author, Gaston III Count of Foix, surnamed Phoebus, probably because of his bright blond hair, wrote this sophisticated piece of literature in the 80s of the 14th century. The miniatures are the work of a team of artists who were active in a Parisian workshop. The artfully designed and lavishly decorated backgrounds of the miniatures remind us of tapestries in a small format. This background painting required much patience and extreme precision. The illumination of the MS—executed c.1405-1410—was performed in two stages: first, the figures, animals, surrounding landscape and different objects, were painted. In this phase, the artists impress us not least with a realistic, detailed illustration and the vivacity of figures. Then the rich floral ornaments were added. The delicate thorned leaf ornaments have a very special charm. Winding around the miniatures and numerous initials in red and blue on gilded ground, they are dispersed throughout the MS for the enjoyment of the reader. In his Live de la Chasse, Gaston Phoebus describes the animals of the chase, their character and behavior. Besides surprising and curious details, the reader will find extended passages of familiar facts and even modern tricks of the trade. Gaston also dedicates much of his book to the dog, the hunter's faithful companion, indulging in reflections on the dog’s character, diverse breeds and appearance. The passionate hunter also deals with the pursuit of game by hounds. At a time when hunting played a major role in noble circles, the great echo made by the Book of the Hunt by Gaston Phoebus was only natural. It immediately became very popular and very soon its fame extended far beyond the borders of France. Commentary by M. Thomas and W. Schlag. Limited edition, bound in full leather.  

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, fr. 9561]
Biblia de Nápoles.
Barcelona: M. Moleiro Editor, 2011. 21 x 31 cm, 384 pp + commentary.

Manuscript fr. 9561 is the only known Italian copy of a Bible moralisée. It was made for Robert of Naples of the first House of Anjou, a line that descends directly from the Capetian branch via Charles I, the brother of St. Louis and founder of the Angevin dynasty. The bible was completed in the early 1350s during the reign of his granddaughter Joanna. It's modeled upon a one-volume, French Bible moralisée known as the Bible of Vienna made in Paris around 1240 which had belonged to Charles of Anjou, the younger brother of St Louis for whom their mother, Blanche of Castile commissioned the Bible of St Louis. The medallions characteristic of these bibles are replaced here by rectangular paintings that are more typical of the Italian style and even in keeping with the bands of fresco paintings that blossomed from 1300 onwards in buildings. This Bible features a juxtaposition of two illustrative formulae that make it exceptional. The first 128 illuminations belong to the Bible moralisée genre. All the paintings in the Old Testament section, except the full-page frontispiece on fol.1, are framed by borders, many of which have plant adornments, and divided into two registers: the upper one containing the biblical scenes and the lower, their moralisations. The 76 full-page paintings in the New Testament cycle contrast sharply with the preceding cycle, taking us into a different spiritual and figurative realm of mainly Giottesque inspiration. Each illumination is painted on gold-leaf ground and illustrates a single theme, hence the canon of the characters is far wider than in the moralisation part. The cycle begins with apocryphal episodes from the Golden Legend, and the iconographic program from the Annunciation onwards (f. 129) is inspired by canonical texts. The illustrations as a whole are basically the work of two hands. Deluxe limited edition of 987 copies, bound in brown leather. [978-84-96400-53-5] 

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, fr. 13096]
Apocalipsis – 1313
Barcelona: M. Moleiro Editor, 2011. 15.5 x 22 cm, 334 pp + commentary.

Signed and dated in 1313 by its illuminator, Colin Chadelve, this apocalypse is a unique creation following the specific requirements of its patron. The codex, with 162 miniatures and 86 full-page illustrations, represents the longest iconographic cycle of the Book of Revelation. The miniatures, homogeneous in style throughout the manuscript, are brought alive by a remarkably dramatic force produced by the gestures of the figures, the liveliness of the scenes, the great color range and the lavish use of gold. Interestingly, this apocalypse exhibits few traces of Parisian style typical of the period; instead it is apparently an unusual adaptation of a very popular English Gothic type in its treatment of text and iconography. Experts believe the Apocalypse of 1313 constitutes an important shift in the Gothic style to a more personal and private prayer book. Commentary by Marie-Thérèse Gousset & Marianne Besseyre.  

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, lat. 6; Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, lat. 5729]
Les bíblies de Ripoll. Vol. I (Edició facsimíl - Biblioteca Apostòlica Vaticana Ms. lat. 5729); Vol. II (Edició facsimíl - Biblioteca Nacional de França, Paris, BnF lat. 6); Vol. III (Estudii Dr. Anscari M. Mundó).
Vic: Gràfiques Diac/Cittá del Vaticano, 2002- 2010. 2˚ & 24 x 17 cm, 3 vols, 266, 318, 404 pp.

Two complete Ripoll Bibles survive, one held now in the Bibl. Apost. Vat. (ms. lat. 5729) and the other in the Bibl. Nationale in Paris (ms. lat. 6). There are also remains—five folios—of a third bible, discovered through years of research; these fragments are found in the Library of Montserrat and the ACA Aixiu Reial of Barcelona. In order to diferentiate them, the bible held in the Vatican is referred to as the “Ripoll Bible” and the one in France, as the “Rodes Bible”. The third, discovered among the remains of the archive of St. Miguel de Fluvià, is named after that monastery. The complete work is entitled “Les Biblies de Ripoll”. The monks of the Ripoll monastery came to produce these bibles during the 10th and first half of the 11th centuries; this was a period of great activity in Ripoll which had become an important cultural center and where an outstanding figure, the Bishop of Oliba, trained monks as copyists and illustrators and set up a scriptorium and workshop. Among the artists that worked there the Monk Guifré de Ripoll seems to have copied the entire “Ripoll Bible” and is in many ways the most important of them. There is also an anonymous artist, a perfectionist, whose work is seen in this bible and who takes into account the proportions, the parallelism and the symmetry of the scenes. He is highly regular in the realist schematization of the human and animal figures and in the depiction of domestic and musical instruments. None of the scenes that he drew are colored. It appears that the monk Guifré de Ripoll colored the scenes in the first part with the same sense of movement he brought to the drawings of the biblical scenes. These wonderful bibles are probably the most splendidly decorated bibles of Europe during the 10th and 11th centuries and are the first monumental works and treasures of the Catalan miniature. Limited edition of 850 copies (MS lat. 5729) and 200 copies (lMS. lat. 6), bound in full leather.   (more info... )

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, lat. 9333]
Tacuinum Sanitatis.
Barcelona: M. Moleiro Editor, 2008. 22.5 x 35.5 cm. 216 pp + commentary.

The Tacuinum Sanitatis is a treatise on health and general well being, written in Arabic by Ububchasym de Baldach. He was a physician, also known as Ibn Butlân, born in Bagdad and who died in 1068. In his treatise he sets forth the six elements necessary to maintain daily health: food & drink, air & environment, activity & rest, sleep & wakefulness, secretions & excretions of humours and changes of states of mind (happiness, anger, etc.). According to Ibn Butlân, illnesses are the result of changes in the balance of these elements; therefore he recommended a life in harmony with nature in order to maintain or recover one’s health. Tacuinum Sanitatis was widely disseminated in the 14th & 15th centuries; in Lombardy during the late 14th century a highly developed series of illustrations was incorporated in the codex. On every folio there is an illuminated miniature and legend (in Latin with a subsequent German translation) of the elements stating their nature, characteristics, benefits or harms and remedies. Ibn Butlân also teaches us to enjoy each season of the year, the consequences of different climates and the benefits of music, dancing and pleasant conversation. The codex is not only an interesting source of medieval information but a remarkable iconographic source for the study of everyday life in the Middle Ages. Limited numbered edition of 987 copies, bound in full leather.  

[Paris, Bibliothèque National, lat. 9471]
Grandes horas de Rohan.
Madrid: A y N Ediciones, 2005 21 x 29 cm, 478, 377 pp.

Known as the Rohan Hours, after the anonymous artist the Rohan Master. This splendid book of hours, c.1430-35, seemed to have been commissioned by Yolande of Aragon. The books margins are decorated with Old Testament miniatures with captions in French in the style of the Bible moralisée. The full-page miniatures are highly dramatic and emotional portrayals of the agonies of Christ and the grief of the Virgin. Deluxe limited edition of 995 copies, bound in full leather. [84 9340 545 0] 

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, néerlandais 3]
Apocalipsis Flamenco.
Barcelona: M. Moleiro Editor, [2005]. 25 x 34 cm, 50 pp + commentary.

An unusual apocalypse of Flemish origin with 23 full-page illuminations. The artwork, while utilizing customary themes of this genre, incorporates motifs not found in other sources. A product of the period just preceeding Van Eyck and the tendency towards realism, the illuminations of the Flemish Apocalypse produce a spectacular visionary effect with enigmatic atmosphere, perfectly complementing the texts they illustrate. Bound in deep red leather, with leather case. [84-96400-02-6] 

[Paris, Bibliothèque National, nouv. acq. lat. 1366]
Beato Liébana Código de Navarra.
Barcelona: Liber Millennium, 2007. 23.5 x 34.5 cm, 314 pp + commentary

Paris BN nouv. acq. lat. 1366, a beautiful manuscript of 314 pages with 63 splendic illuminations, was created in Navarre in the 11th century. The facsimile edition represents the pinnacle of an ambitious project to reproduce all of the Beato manuscripts—the commentary on the Apocalypse written by Beatus of Liébana in the 8th century—this codex being the final witness that completes the corpus of the hispanic illustrated manuscripts of this genre. A 17th-c. catalog suggests that the MS once belonged to the library of the Catedral of Pamplona; its Navarre origins is also indicated by a document affixed inside the binding. Limited edition of 995 copies, bound in leather with clasps and case. €5330   

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, Rothschild 2973]
Le chansonnier Cordiforme de Jean de Montchenu.
Valencia: Vicent García Editores, 2007-2008. Heart shaped, 22 x 16 cm, 144 pp + commentary.

This exceptional MS, closed, is shaped like a heart; it opens into the shape of a butterfly composed of the hearts of the two lovers who send love messages to one another in each one of the songs. When the word “heart” appears in the texts, it is represented by a pictogram. Two full-page illustrations appear in the codex. In the first, Cupid throws arrows at a young girl while at his side Fortune spins his wheel. In the other, two lovers approach one another lovingly. Throughout the MS the pentagrams, music and love poems are surrounded by borders made up of animals, birds, dogs, cats and all kinds of flowers and plants highlighted in abundant and delicate gold. The book gets its name from Jean de Montchenu, a nobleman, apostolic prothonotary, Bishop of Agen (1477) and later of Vivier (1478-1497) who commissioned the work. The music repertoire consists of French and Italian songs written by Dufay, Ockeghem, Busnois and their contemporaries. Limited edition of 1380 copies bound in red velet after the original; 2-part slipcase covered in green leather. €3480    (more info... )

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, suppl. turc. 190]
Mi’ragnama. Apocalipsis de Mahoma.
Valencia: Patrimonio Ediciones, 2008. 24.5 x 35.5 cm. 70 pp + commentary.

Conserved in the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris under the siglum Suppl. Turc. 190 "Mi'ragnama – The apocalypse of Mohamed" is a masterpiece of Mimurid style, produced in 1436 in Herat in the north of modern day Afghanistan. It describes the adventures of the prophet Mohamed’s journey through the celestial sphere, in the company of the Archangel Gabriel, to arrive before the throne of God and his subsequent return trip to Earth through the seven circles of Hell. In medieval Europe the work became known through the Latin translation that Alfonso the Wise commissioned from the school of translators in Toledo, which, in the judgment of some experts, may have inspired Dante’s Divine Comedy. Islamic culture produced books on par with those of the west and created numerous art works of impressive beauty. In Persia, the perfect fusion of the Arab school and the Buddhist art of India and China produced the Timurid style. Timur’s son—Tamerlane, the Shah Ruj—transferred the capital from Samarkand, where his father lived, to Herat and promoted a style of illumination characterized by a realism that surpassed the typical stylization of Islam and resulted in a fascinating pictorial drama. The even rhythm of the miniatures, masterfully balanced, brought about a pivotal moment in early 15th-century Persian art. The magic that inspires the Chinese-influenced design of these compositions of harmonious movement imparts to the art of the Persian miniature an excellence that, along with its exquisite palette, converts its illustrations into treasures of world art. Limited edition of 999 numbered examples bound in leather and fire-engraved gold. €4800   

[Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, suppl. turc 242]
Libro de la Felicidad (Matali’ al-saadet).
Barcelona: M. Moleiro Editor, 2007. 21 x 31 cm, 286 pp + commentary

The 16th and early 17th centuries were the most fertile period of Turkish-Ottoman painting, with the reign of Murad III (1574-1595) being particular prolific in beautiful works of art, such as this Matali’ al-saadet—Book of Felicity—by Muhammad ibn Amir Hassan al-Su’udi. This work, which the sultan himself ordered to be translated from the original Arabic, features descriptions of the 12 signs of the zodiac accompanied by splendid miniatures, a series of paintings showing how human circumstances are influenced by the planets, astrological and astronomical tables, and a enigmatic treatise on fortune telling. All the paintings seem to be by the same workshop under the guidance of the famous master Ustad ‘Osman, undoubtedly the artist of the opening series of paintings dedicated to the signs of the zodiac. ‘Osman, active between c.1559 and 1596, directed the artists in the Seraglio workshop from 1570 onwards and created a style charaterized by accurate portraits and a magnificent treatment of illustration. Sultan Murad III held illuminated manuscripts in greater esteem than any other sultan; this treatise of felicity was especially commissioned by him for his daugther Fatima. Turkish binding in red leather with gold tooling.  

[Paris, Musée de Louvre, & 7 other institutions]
I disegni di Leonardo da Vinci e della sua cerchia nelle collezioni pubbliche in Francia. Ordinati e presentati da Pietro C. Marani / [The Drawings of Leonardo da Vinci and His Circle in the Public Collections in France. Arranged and Presented by Pietro C. Marani].
Florence: Giunti Barbèra, 2008. 33.5 x 49 cm, 114 plates, 280 pp.

NEW. The Department des Arts Graphiques at the Musée du Louvre in Paris conserves what is possibly the most important collection of drawings by Leonardo and his circle in Europe, after that housed in the Royal Library at Windsor. Considered together with the other French collections, that of the Louvre, begun by the King of France Louis XIV and augmented over the centuries, offers an unrivalled overview of Leonardo’s graphics, highlighting all the techniques and all the various stylistic changes. They range from the first brush drawings executed on superfine linen cloth recalled by Vasari, the pen and ink drawings relating to the Adoration of the Magi and the Madonnas of his early maturity, the drawings in red chalk of the early Milan period, right through to the celebrated drawing, colored using mixed technique, with the Portrait of Isabella d’Este and the studies for Saint Anne. The collection presents all Leonardo’s scattered drawings conserved in the following French museums: Musée de Louvre, École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Institut Néerlandais, Fondation Custodia, Collection Frits Lugt, Musé Bonnat (Bayonne), Musée des Beaux-Arts (Rennes). Limited edition of 998 copies, supplied with leather covered clamshell case for the facsimiles and text volume in half leather. (only available with purchase of entire set of the Edizione Nazionale) €6000  [78301-P] 

[Parma, Biblioteca Palatina, 1650]
Parma Ildefonso.
Modena: Il Bulino, 2010. 15.8 x 23 cm, 222 pp + commentary.

The Parma Ildefonso is an illuminated manuscript on parchment made in Cluny 1090 to 1100. A copy of “De Virginitate Sanctae Mariae” written by Saint Ildefonsus (c.610-667), it is an impassioned theological work railing against heretics who doubt the purity of the Virgin Mary. The text may be a transcription of a Spanish copy destined for Bernardo de la Sauvetat, formerly a monk in Cluny and later Bishop of Toledo. (As Toledo had just been liberated from infidel occupation the text is connected to the reconquering of the Iberian peninsular.) The system of illustration is very complex: each one of the 222 pages is decorated with frames, painted in gold, silver or purple, with geometrical shapes or stylized leaves; inside the frames are the pictures or the text. Moreover there are 9 full-page illuminations, 16 half pages, 8 smaller illuminations representing the prophets, 9 big capital letters, 28 golden smaller letters and many other decorations. Deluxe limited edition of 499 copies. Full leather binding with slipcase covered with linen. €4750    (more info... )

[Philadelphia, Free Library, Widener 1]
Jacques Bruyant: Le livre du chastel de labour (The Way of Poverty or Riches).
Luzern: Faksimile-Verlag, 2005. 14.4 x 20.7 cm, 146 pp + commentary.

While at first glance it appears to be a book of hours, this manuscript is a guide to happiness for the newly-wed nobleman. In secular poetry and with pictures, the art of living and working congenially is portrayed. The text was written c.1342 by Jacques Bruyant, a clergyman from Paris. A great number of ms copies bear testimony to the popularity of his work but only one single copy was illustrated with miniatures. The priceless work is part of a small group of illuminated mss made in the circle of the famous Bedford Master of Paris. For more than 25 years, starting c.1410, the Master remained one of the most significant illuminators of Europe. His art was inspired by the Limbourg brothers but he introduced new creative elements: well balanced compositions with refined colorings, marvellous perspective, dimensionality of forms and faces, plus sumptuous borders. His images help us discover the medieval world largely through details, individualistic facial expressions and realistic elements which betray his exact sense of observation. Limited edition of 980 copies, bound in red velvet with gilt edges and four gilt silver fittings. Commentary by Eberhard König & William Lang. €3480   

[Prague, National Library, XXIII.C.124; olim Ms.412]
The Velislav Bible - Velislai bibli picta. [standard edition].
Prague: Archa 90 Publishing House, 2007. 2°, 376 pp + commentary.

This picture bible—the most extensive in medieval central Europe—originated in the first half the 14th c. on the incentive of Velislav, who is portrayed on fol. 188r kneeling before the statue of St. Catherine. It is highly probable that he is the Prague canon of the same name, who also served as a notary to John of Luxembourg, and later became a notary as well as a diplomat to Charles IV. The book’s origins can be traced to a secular workshop. The Velislav Bible is neither a biblia pauperum, a type which emerged later and was stabilized at thirty or forty repeating images, nor is it a fully illustrated bible encompassing the full biblical text. It includes the following Books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Daniel, Judges, Judith and also a series on the Antichrist, life of Christ, Apocalypse, Apostles and on the Czech patron saints St. Wenceslaus and St. Ludmila. In the latter half of the book some other images can be found. Due to the fact that most images are included with legends, sometimes with the names of characters, the MS can be considered as a “comic” book. Romanticizing elements appear in the picture MS as well as hints of later development leading to a style of great beauty. Among the 747 colored pictures are historical scenes from Czech history. Limited edition of 868 copies, bound in vellum with bronze bosses. €2890   

[private collection]
Libro de las setas de Robert Wilson.
Burgos: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2007. 10.3 x 16.3 cm, 622 pp.

Deluxe facsimile of the unique manuscript, 1805, from a private collection. Limited edition of 898 copies. 978-84-935459-3-2 

[Ravenna, Biblioteca Classense, ms. 62]
Libro d’ore di Maria Stuarda.
Castelvetro di Modena: ArtCodex, 2009. 7 x 11 cm, 358 pp + commentary.

This beautiful little book of hours, which is conserved as ms. 62 at the Biblioteca Classense of Ravenna (Emilia-Romagna), dates from the beginning of the 16th century. Almost certainly used by Mary, Queen of Scots herself, the Queen’s name on the first flyleaf would seem to identify the little codex as a very personal possession of one of the most fascinating, enigmatic and tragic figures of Europe of the 16th c. The manuscript text, in Latin and copied in Italian Gothic script, is preceded by seven leaves which illustrate the scenes of the months of the year and the corresponding signs of the zodiac, an iconographic tradition in Anglo-Saxon illuminated codices which dates from the Middle Ages. The very fine illuminated miniatures, rich in flowers, fruit, insects, birds and acanthus leaves and with red initial letters finely worked in gold-leaf, are Flemish in style and very probably originated in the cities of Bruges and Ghent. They include 18 superb full-page illuminations, 12 of which depicting the months of the year and 6 introducing the various Offices. The incisive way of representing the sacred figures, the unusually strong and expressive colors, the abundant use of gold leaf, the use of perspective and spatial illusion which simulate architectural backgrounds or wide landscape views bring to mind the contemporary paintings of Hugo van der Goes and Roger van der Weyden, of Hans Memling and Jan van Eyck. The little volume is issued in a box with a facsimile of the death sentence of Mary, Queen of Scots dated February 1, 1587 which bears the signature of Elizabeth I. Commentary edited by Claudia Giuliani. Limited edition of 999 copies bound in red silken velvet, with a jade stone set in the central gilded ornament and pearl settings on the corner elements. €5700   

[Rome, Bibl. Casanatense, ms. 2020]
Codice Valois. Il Vangelo del Principe di Francia. A cura di Isabella Ceccopieri & Giovanna Lazzi.
Florence: Vallecchi, 2007. 15,7 x 22,4 cm, 312 pp + commenatary

Ms. 2020 is a court Evangeliary of French origin purchased by the Biblioteca Casanatense around 1900. It contains the passages of the Gospels read during mass in various periods of the year. Recent studies have shed light on the atelier in Tours that produced it. The Evangeliary was probably made there around 1526 in the period in which king of France, Francis I was forced to send his two eldest sons, the Dauphin Francis and the younger Henry (the future Henry II) to Spain as hostages of Charles V, in exchange for his own freedom after the defeat of Pavia, which took place on February 24, 1525. The book was made along with a twin manuscript, today conserved at the Biblioteca Nacional of Madrid, and a third codex, conserved at Chantilly, of a didactic nature, which aimed at educating the young princes. The 3 codices are joined by an incontrovertible bond, not only for the presence of the coats of arms of the Dauphin and the Cadets that abound in the decoration, but also because all 3 can be traced back to the hand of a copyist and illuminator from Tours associated with the favourite artist of Queen Claude of France. The Casanatense Evangeliary seems to have been intended for the chapel of the dauphin Francis of Valois, as the recurrent crest confirms. This jewel of Renaissance illumination depicts delicate scenes which seem to communicate all the trepidation of its owner, Queen Claude of France—sovereign as well as mother—who saw her son torn from her. She thus had the Valois Codex made and given to her son to accompany him in exile, so that through reading it, he would be educated and initiated on a path of faith which would illuminate him for his entire life. Commentary by Isabella Ceccopieri and Giovanna Lazzi. Limited edition of 499 copies bound in full leather with velet case. €7800  [88-8427-022-7] 

[Salzburg, Stiftsbibl. St. Peter, a I 0]
Psalterium sancti Ruperti [standard edition].
Codices Selecti, CXII. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2007. 3.1 x 3.7 cm, 117 pp + commentary.

This rare miniature psalter—measuring just 31 by 37 mm and with a text size of just 1.5 mm—is believed to have been compiled in the period between 850 and 875 in northeast part of France. The note of possession “Manuale psalterii sancti Rudberti episcopi” found on the first page of the codex is a later (15th c.) inscription and the first indication of its location in the monastery of St. Peter in Salzburg. The small booklet, written in Carolingian minuscule, begins with an introduction of the holy Hironymus from the edition of his Gallicanum and the Prologue “Origo prophetiae Regis David” which explains the development of the psalms. On fol. 2r a portrait of King David with his harp is featured; much of the text is written in gold against a crimson backround. A unusual feature of the book is its upon back style with exposed spine—faithfully reproduced in this facsimile edition—a design which obviously allowed the user greater ease in paging through the miniature book. Limited edition of 980 copies, in the standard edition. €1380 [3-201-01877-7] 

[Santa Monica, J. Paul Getty Museum, Ms. 37]
Das Gebetbuch Karls des Kühnen.
Luzern: Faksimile-Verlag, 2007. 9.2 x 12.4 cm, 318 pp + commentary.

Commissioned by Charles, duke of Burgundy for his personal use, this precious Burgundian treasure holds a key position in the history of Flemish illumination. Consisting of 159 folios with 47 miniatures it is the work of Lieven van Lathem and the scribe Nicolas Spierinc. A delight in fantasy is evident throughout the book, even in the imaginative borders that are populated with countless drolleries, humans, and birds, all set between colored acanthus leaves and tiny golden buds. The fine calligraphy of the text is organized around more than 360 initials, mostly on chiselled golden grounds; each page of text is additionally decorated with an ornamental border. Lieven van Lathem was active in the cultural area of Flanders, between Bruges and Ghent, Antwerp and Utrecht. Born around 1430, he first was a member of the painters’ guild in Ghent, and later, until his death in 1490, of the St. Luke’s guild in Antwerp. By the end of the 15th c. the Flemish city of Antwerp ranked as the center of landscape painting, but it was van Lathem with his atmospheric art who had paved the way for this development. One name is inextricably associated with the painting school of Bruges and Ghent: that of the Viennese Master of Mary of Burgundy—famous for his forceful expressiveness when it came to bringing life to delicate faces or the movement of muscles on parchment. Although his identity remains unknown, a number of art historians assume him to be Alexander Bening, father of Simon Bening, the last grand Flemish master. He entered the artistic scene with The Prayer Book of Charles the Bold and the world of art immediately got a vivid impression of his unique talent. Nicolas Spierinc, Burgundy’s most famous calligrapher, is not only responsible for the wonderful handwriting, he also embellished many pages with so-called cadels, elaborate letters that were decorated with lines in writing ink. Some of the magnificent cadels were even painted in addition with glowing gold, a lustre that is perfectly rendered in the facsimile edition. Commentary by Antoine de Schryver. Limited edition of 980 copies bound in purple velvet with ornamental clasps, metal corners, medallion and finely applied gilt edges (a replica of the original binding).  

[Silos, Monasterio de Santo Domingo de Silos, & 8 other locations]
Fragmentos de Beatos.
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, 2009.

All the most important surviving fragments of Beatus. 17 fragments dating from the 9th to the 12th c., including the most recent discovery from the beginning of 2009. Sources: Santo Domingo de Silos, San Pedro de las Dueñas (Leon), Archivo Histórico Provincial de Zamora, Archivo Diocesano de León, Archivo de la Real Chancillería de Valladolid, Archivo de la Corona de Aragón, Archivo Histórico Provincial de León, Biblioteca de la Abadía de Montserrat, Archivo General de la Nación (Mexico). Commentary by John Williams. €500 [978-84-95767-84-4] 

[Skara, Skara Stifts- och landsbibliotek]
Skaramissalet. Studier, edition, översättning och faksimil av handskriften i Skara. Christer Pahlmblad.
Skrifter utbivna av Stifts- och landsbiblioteket. Skara: Stiftelsen för utgivande av Skaramissalet, 2006. 24 x 32 cm, 450 pp.

Facsimile and text edition of a rare medieval missal from Scandinavia. Shares many characteristics with northern French and English sources. With translation of text (into Swedish) and 12 essays; summaries in English. $102 [91-859802-7-7]  (more info... )

[Tel Aviv, private collection William Gross]
Megillat Esther.
London: Facsimile Editions, 2006. Scroll, 10.8 x 168 cm, 64 pp (commentary).

Purim is a holiday of feasting and joy which celebrates the deliverance of the Jews of Persia during the reign of King Xerxes (485-465 BCE). The word Purim is derived from ‘Pur’ meaning lots, literally the lots cast by the Persians to decide when to execute the Jews. This story, recounted in the biblical book of Esther, is read publicly in synagogues each Purim. The reader recites it from a parchment scroll, known as a megillah. Over the centuries, Esther scrolls have become a symbol of celebration and continuity of Jewish life and they form the core of several major collections. The Gross family in Israel owns one of the finest collections in the world and their particular illuminated copy of the megillah is the basis of this facsimile edition. Written scrolls of Esther are not rare, but this megillah, written on fine parchment, is exceptional because the entire Purim story is illustrated in meticulous detail. Virtually every aspect of the Book of Esther is depicted in the miniature, where heroes and villains are playfully painted around the clear, square text to illustrate the victory of good over evil. There are scenes of baroque buildings and genteel characters in typical 18th-c. dress; even Haman’s sons hang in droll positions from the gallows. The wealth of detail contained within the intricately-drawn buildings and costumed figures adds weight to the theory that it was written in Germany around 1700. Although the exact date and location that the MS was commissioned remains a mystery, the words ‘STATT SHUSONN’ written in Latin letters above one of the illustrations at the beginning of the scroll reinforce the German provenance of the manuscript. Only one other Esther scroll, in the Library of the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, is known to make use of Latin letters, and was written by the same scribe. Commentary by Emile Schrijver and Falk Wiesemann, with contribution by Muzi Wertheim and William Gross, edited by Jeremy Schonfield. Limited edition of 295 copies, printed on parchment and presented in a hand-tooled silver case. $3995  [0-948223-251] 

[Torino, Archivio di Stato, Museo dell’Archivio di Corte, JB.II.21 bis]
Calendario del livre de laudes et dèvotions.
Castel San Pietro: Trident Editore, 2005. 21 x 30 cm. 24 pp + commentary.

First of 4 volumes that comprise the Book of Laudes and Devotions. The Calendario was used for private devotions and to celebrate, with prayers, the religious festivities. It was executed by an artist of the French School around the middle of the 15th century and belonged to the prestigious collection of the House of Savoy. In 1764 King Carlo Emanuele III acquired it from Sigismond Touttemps, Canon of the church of St. Joire in the region of Chambery. It is a splendid example of the late French gothic, richly ornamented with a profusion of gold and color with traces of influence from Flemish painting. Each month is depicted in 2 arch-shaped windows, showing the different activities of the months, including the zodiac signs. The beauty and refinement of the codex is comparable to the best works of the Limbourg Brothers for the Duke of Berry and its paternity goes back to the Parisian School of the Master of Bedford and brother of the King of England Henry V, during the time of the English occupation of Paris. Limited edition of 299 copies bound in full leather. €1950   

[Torino, Archivio di Stato, Museo dell’Archivio di Corte, JB.II.34]
Officium beatae mariae virginis.
Castel San Pietro: Trident Editore, 2005. 15 x 19.5 cm. 238 pp + commentary.

One of the most refined examples of a French school 15th-c. prayer book. This elegant personal devotional book belonged to Maria Antonietta Fernanda of Borbon infanta of Spain and wife of Prince Vittorio Amadeo III. It was acquired by king Carlo Emanuele III as a gift for the Princess of the Savoy House. The Italian destination of the MS is clear by the majority of the saints with Italian names. The beautiful miniatures of the Flemish school of Master Willem Vrelant represents the main episodes of the life of the Virgin. The cornices are richly decorated with interlacing of leaves and flowers and the letters are brilliant with gold and lively colors. Limited edition of 299 copies bound in full leather. €3650   

[Trier, Stadtbibliothek, 24]
Codex Egbert.
Luzern: Faksimile-Verlag, 2005. 21 x 27 cm, 2 vols, 330, 248 pp.

One of the most important works of book illumination from the Ottonian period. This periope or evangelistarium was created around 983 for Egbert, the chancellor of Kaiser Otto II and features the earliest picture cycle of the life of Christ. Archbishop Egbert lived during one of the most creative periods in the history of art, at a time when exceptional centers of artistic creativity flourished in the scriptoriums of the monasteries. The most famous of them was the Benedictine Abbey at Reichenau. These artistic monks of Bodensee developed a style which gave Ottonian book illumination its distinctive quality. The monks succeeded in creating a breathtaking synthesis of northern and southern art forms, a vocabulary where the rich legacy of Carolingian tradition is combined with elements of insular painting or Byzantine art. The form reaches it fruition in Codex Egbert, a pericope containing 60 illuminated pages and over 240 decorated initials. The rich series of miniatures for the life and miracles of Christ as well as the portraits of the evangelists and Archbishop Egbert, executed in gold, silver and precious colors, still grab the viewer today through their calmness and tranquility. Each miniature is filled with great spiritual strength. The unity of the picture cycle shows conclusively that there was one master responsible for the artistic conception of the book. Art historians have identified him as the "Gregory Master", a monk associated with a collection of letters of Pope Gregory the Great. Commentary volume by Gunther Franz, Franz J. Ronig, Robert Fuchs, Doris Oltrogge and Sif Dagmar Dornheim. Limited edition of 980 copies. Bound with green silk and silver plated metal work, in Ottonian style. €6500    (more info... )

[Tübingen, Universitätsbibliothek, Md 2]
Iatromathematisches Kalenderbuch / Die Kunst der Astronomie und Geomantie. Farbmikrofiche-Edition der Handschrift Tübingen, Universitätsbibliothek, Md 2. Beschreibung der Handschrift von Gerd Brinkhus. Introduction to the Astrological-Divinatory Manuscript by David Juste. Verzeichnis der Federzeichungen, Rubriken und Initien der Abschnitte und Anmerkungen zu den Texten und Bildern von Helga Lengenfelder.
Codices Illuminati Medii Aevi, 63. Munich: Edition Helga Lengenfelder, 2005. 17 x 25 cm, 124 pp, 11 fiches (x36).

The “Tübingen Book”, a beautifully executed and richly illustrated MS copied by a single scribe probably in the region of Württemburg around the mid 15th-c., is a “Hausbuch” written in German. The general purpose of such a book is to provide advice and rules for managing daily like. The advice and rules are mainly drawn from astrology and geomancy, but the work also deals with other divinatory devices, such as weather prognostics and onomancy, and it includes sections on computus and astronomy. The book (or its model) is not an original composition; its author had at his disposal a number of sources which he re-arranged and compiled in his own way in a self-contained way. Thus the reader does not need to possess particular knowledge in any scientific area, nor to consult any astrologer or specialist—all astrological and divinatory devices are clearly explained and the “mathematical” apparatus is fully provided, so that the user only needs to be able to read, to perform elementary calculations, and to locate the correct data in tables and figures. The interest of the book lies above all in the quality and richness of its illustrations which represent a remarkable artistic achievement, long acknowledged by art historians. Linen. €290 [3-89219-063-1]  (more info... )

[Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, Barb. lat. 613]
Biblia de Nicolas III d’Este.
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, [in prep]. 26.6 x 36 cm, 636 pp + commentary.

This celebrated 15th-c. MS of Lombardian provenance once belonging to Niccolò III of Ferrara, is one of the great masterpieces of the international gothic. Its text—the French version of the Bible by Guiard des Moulins (1401-1434)—is copied in lower case gothic script and arranged in two columns. Each page is executed in a highly decorative manner and the bible contains some remarkable miniatures and gilded initials, especially the ones that mark the beginning of the Old and New Testaments and each chapter. The principal artist was probably Bebello de Pavia and his school, while Jacopino de Arezzo is attributed with the non-figurative initials and with finishing the work. Subscription price. €7813  

[Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, lat. 3747]
Il pontificale di Bonifacio IX.
Collectio Vaticana. Castelvetro di Modena: ArtCodex, 2006. 21 x 31 cm, 2 vols, 104, 159 pp.

Pope Boniface IX (1389-1404), born Pietro Tomacelli and scion of a noble Neapolitan family, ruled in Rome during the Western Schism (1378-1415) as counterpart to Clement VIII in Avignon. Boniface showed little interest in ending the Schism, preferring to concentrate his efforts and creativity on the enhancement of his fortune. He sold indulgences and divided the Papal State into vicarages which he leased to solvent families, who in turn bled them dry. This splendid codex must be viewed and understood as part of the historical background which includes the Schism and the strengthening of papal power in Rome. It sparkles with the enchanting gleam of pure gold and vivid colors: the exceptionally rich iconographic display consists of illuminated initials and elegant framing, embellished with gold and adorned with anthropomorphous figures in deep colors. Originally created as a “Praeparatio ad Missam” for personal use by the Pontiff, it has 11 splendid full-page miniatures ablaze with gold that meticulously illustrate the ceremonies of the pope and his vestments. Commentary by Ambrogio M. Piazzoni. Limited edition of 500 copies bound in full leather, bearing the coat of arms of Pope Boniface engraved in gold. €9900  

[Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, lat. 3768]
Libro illustrado de oraciones códice Vat. lat. 3768.
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, 2009. 338 pp + commentary.

A magnificient Book of Hours copied towards the end of the 15th or beginning of the 16th c, associated with the scribes and artists of Ghent and Bruges (Robert Campion, Jan van Eyck, Hugo van der Goes, Gerard David). Each page has margins illuminated with flowers and fruit, insects, flies and other animals, presented as 3-dimensional images; numerous miniatures (some filling an entire page, others half a page) illustrate sections of the manuscript. Some seem so special that one might think them unique or extremely rare, for example, the one illustrating the sacrament of confession or penitence framed within a great Gothic church, or another with the prayer to a saint with a surprising background: a beautiful landscape where two young men are sailing in a boat, entertaining themselves with music and song. Commentary by Jorge Cardenal Mijía. Limited edition of 980 copies bound in full leather with generous blind stamping. €1450  

[Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, lat. 5729; Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, lat.6]
Les bíblies de Ripoll. Vol. I (Edició facsimíl - Biblioteca Apostòlica Vaticana Ms. lat. 5729); Vol. II (Edició facsimíl - Biblioteca Nacional de França, Paris, BnF lat. 6); Vol. III (Estudii Dr. Anscari M. Mundó).
Vic: Gràfiques Diac/Cittá del Vaticano, 2002- 2010. 2˚ & 24 x 17 cm, 3 vols, 266, 318, 404 pp.

Two complete Ripoll Bibles survive, one held now in the Bibl. Apost. Vat. (ms. lat. 5729) and the other in the Bibl. Nationale in Paris (ms. lat. 6). There are also remains—five folios—of a third bible, discovered through years of research; these fragments are found in the Library of Montserrat and the ACA Aixiu Reial of Barcelona. In order to diferentiate them, the bible held in the Vatican is referred to as the “Ripoll Bible” and the one in France, as the “Rodes Bible”. The third, discovered among the remains of the archive of St. Miguel de Fluvià, is named after that monastery. The complete work is entitled “Les Biblies de Ripoll”. The monks of the Ripoll monastery came to produce these bibles during the 10th and first half of the 11th centuries; this was a period of great activity in Ripoll which had become an important cultural center and where an outstanding figure, the Bishop of Oliba, trained monks as copyists and illustrators and set up a scriptorium and workshop. Among the artists that worked there the Monk Guifré de Ripoll seems to have copied the entire “Ripoll Bible” and is in many ways the most important of them. There is also an anonymous artist, a perfectionist, whose work is seen in this bible and who takes into account the proportions, the parallelism and the symmetry of the scenes. He is highly regular in the realist schematization of the human and animal figures and in the depiction of domestic and musical instruments. None of the scenes that he drew are colored. It appears that the monk Guifré de Ripoll colored the scenes in the first part with the same sense of movement he brought to the drawings of the biblical scenes. These wonderful bibles are probably the most splendidly decorated bibles of Europe during the 10th and 11th centuries and are the first monumental works and treasures of the Catalan miniature. Limited edition of 850 copies (MS lat. 5729) and 200 copies (lMS. lat. 6), bound in full leather.   (more info... )

[Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, mess. 1]
Códice Borgia.
Colección Thesaurus Americae, [6]. Madrid: Testimonio, 2009. 27 x 26.5 cm. 78 pp + commentary

Codex Borgia (= Codex Borgianus or Ms Velletri), once belonging Cardinal Stefano Borgia in Rome from whom it takes its name, is one of the most beautiful of the few surviving pre-Columbian painted mss. It is a ritual and divinatory ms written possibly in the zone of Puebla-Tlaxcala-Cholula. The codex is executed on deer leather with a coat of stucco. The format is a folding screen of 39 sheets or 78 pages (c. 27 x 26.5 cm per page) and extends more that 10 meters unfolded. The codex has been painted on both sides of each sheet with the exception of the first and last sheet. The ms describes the indigenous calendar (260 days) of the ritual cycle and predictive, connecting the different names of days, deites and rituals with a favorable destiny depending on the birthday, names and other factors. Used by palace diviners and curers as a means of invoking the prophecies of the gods. Deluxe edition in the original format and recreating the tactile experience of the original; with portfolio and box. €2800  

[Vatican, Bibl. Apost., pal. lat. 1071]
El arte de la cetrería de Federico II (siglo XIII).
Colección Scriptorium, 25. Madrid: Testimonio, 2005. 25 x 36 cm, 220 pp + commentary.

The art of falconry, one of the oldest sports, consists in the use of birds of prey trained to hunt birds of a larger size like cranes, bustards, geese, and other species they wouldn't normally hunt. These hunting techniques arrived in Europe around the 5th century and were introduced by the Germanic invaders. The mosaics of the Halconero Villa in Argos, Greece, showed for the first time what this art is. After its introduction in Europe falconry rapidly spread there, becoming the favorite sport of kings and princes. During the Renaissance when firearms were perfected, falconry declined and almost disappeared. Falconry gave rise to a very abundant literature; the first work in Europe is a 10th c.tract by the "Anonymous de Vercelli". Frederick II von Hohenstaufen, a passionate hunter and especially interested in falconry and the natural sciences spent more than 30 years gathering information and experiences to write the master work of the Western art of falconry: De Arte Venandi cum avibus (The Art of Falconry). This erudite emperor considered all previous literature in this area poor and insufficient. Frederick's work is transmitted in Codex ms. pal. lat. 1071, preserved in the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana. This 2-column 111 folio parchment manuscript is the most famous and best known of all the works of Frederick II because of its incredibly beautiful illustrations. The marginalia has 170 human figures, more than 900 species of birds, 12 horses and 36 other animals plus all the paraphenalia needed for falconry. Commentary by José Manuel Fradejas Rueda. Boound in full leather. €2550 [84-95767-51-1]  (more info... )

[Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, pal. lat. 1988]
Leyenda de la Santa Faz (Legende de Saint-Voult de Lucques).
Salamanca: CM Editores, 2008. 24 x 35 cm, 88 pp + commentary.

The Master of the Holy Face takes his name from this MS. Commentary Span-Ital by M. De Larue and B. Rodero. €3600   

[Vatican, Biblioteca Apostolica, vat. graecus 1613]
The “Menologion”, Book of Saints of Emperor Vasilios II.
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, 2006.

Commissioned by the emperor Vasilios II (976-1025), the “Menologion” is considered the most prominent masterpiece of illustrated Greek MSS to survive. It represents a culmination of the artistic trends of the Constantinople court c.1000. The MS contains in its present form the first six months of the Byzantine liturgical year, from September through February. The MS is essentially a Book of Saints, a liturgical book of the Orthodox Church containing abridged information on the Saint of the feast day commemorated, read in the morning during matins. In this exquisite luxurious edition that was made for the last great emperor of the Maddedon dynasty, the short texts dedicated to the Saint or the feast of that day are accompanied by a miniature (430 in all), portraying the respective commemoration. We see in front of our eyes the unfoldig series of Saints, Martyrs, Confessors, Hierarchs and Ascetics, all illustrated standing in dignified solemnity, along with architectural monuments, landscapes, etc. One unique aspect of the MS is that one can discern next to every illustration the name of the hagiographer that painted it, allowing us access to the artistic trends of the era, as well as to the personal characteristics of each of the eight artists that are involved in this work: Pantoleon, Georgios, Michael the Younger, Michael of Vlachernae, Simeon, Simeon of Vlachernae, Menas and Nestor. €7675  

[Venice, Bibl. Naz. Marciana, it. IX, 87 [=6226] )
Il libro delle sorti di Lorenzo Spirito Gualtieri.
Modena: Franco Cosimo Panini, 2007. 17,4 x 24.4 cm. 2 vols, 128, 283 pp.

For centuries man has wondered about his own destiny, asking, what would become of me? where may I turn to find an answer that would reliably help me to confront my fate? To answer these questions Lorenzo Spirito Gualtieri, born in Perugia (1426-1496) created and wrote a society game for the delight of a noble family from Perugia, probably the Braccio da Montone. "Il libro delle sorti", the fortune book, comprehends the questions and answers that most frequently haunted men at that time: happiness, marriage, the birth of son, the time of death, the outcome of a war or success in business. The MS, now at the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana di Venezia, has become very popular and already there have been dozens of editions published in Italy and elsewhere. "Il libro delle sorti", finished by the author in 1482, has 5 sections: route of fortune, monarchs, astrological signs, celestial spheres and prophets; each section was illustrated in the first decade of the 16th century by painters from Umbria who were in the circle of Pietro Perugino and the young Raffaello. A splendid paraphernalia of miniatures, with touches of gold, which represent a synthesis of figure painting in mid-Italy at that time. Limited edition of 980 copies with wooden clamshell box. €4800   

[Venice, Bibl. Naz. Marciana, lat. I 99 [2138])
Breviario Grimani.
Rome: Salerno Editrice, 2010. 22,5 x 28 cm, 1670 pp + commentary.

The Grimani Breviary is a key work in the late history of Flemish illuminated manuscripts, produced in Ghent and Bruges c.1515-1520. Kept at the Biblioteca Marciana in Venice it consistsof 1670 pages full of wonderful illuminations. By 1520 the book was owned, though possibly not originally commissioned, by Cardinal Domenico Grimani. Several leading artists, including Gerard David and the Flemings Simon Bening and Gerard Horenbout, contributed some of their finest work to it. The illuminations represent both religious scenes as everyday scenes from Flanders. Deluxe facsimile edition of 750 copies, bound with red silk velvet on wooden boards. €22000   

[Verona, Biblioteca Civica, ms. 1853]
Preghiera alla Vergine con le leggende di San Giiorgio e Santa Margherita.
Ars Illuminandi. Modena: Il Bulino, 2007. 17 x 24 cm, 84 pp + commentary.

Parchment MS, second half of the 13th century, possibly from the convent of St. Mary Magdalene. The first 2 folios, written in semi-cursive Gothic, contain the Prayer to the Virgin, one of the most ancient lauds in the Veronese tongue. The rest of the MS presents 2 texts written in rotunda Gothic: the legends of St.George of Cappadocia (ff. 3r-26r) and of St.Margaret of Antioch (ff. 27r-37v). At the end of the codex two full-page illuminations depict Christ with the four evangelists and St. Christopher. The artistic importance of the manuscript lies in its 78 extraordinary miniatures that illustrate the legends of St.George and St.Margaret. The result is a wonderful narration in images, with a continuous relationship between text and illustrations. All the illuminations, perfectly preserved, have a strong connection in style with frescoes of the same period in Verona and show evidence of the influence of Bolognese painting. Commentary, edited by Daniele Bini, presents the complete transcription of the text and essays by Agostino Contò and Giuseppa Z. Zanichelli. Limited edition of 999 copies, bound with wooden boards covered with red leather, with straps and clasps. €2500 [88-86251-66-1] 

[Vic (Catalunya), Biblioteca Episcopal, ms. 88]
Libro de horas del Obispo Morgades.
Barcelona: Liber Millennium, [in prep]. 10.3 x 14.2 cm. 110 pp + commentary.


[Vienna, Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, ser.nov.2639]
Lobgedicht auf König Robert von Anjou [deluxe edition].
Codices Selecti, CXIII. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2008. 34,4 x 48,5 cm, 144 pp + commentary.

(same as above but limited deluxe edition of 80 copies bound in deerskin, with raised bands and four golden lilies on the front cover [after the House of Anjou], together with the coat of arms of Robert d'Anjou). (Special subscription price valid until late Summer 2010) €7900 [3-201-01874-4] 

[Vienna, Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, ser.nov.2639]
Lobgedicht auf König Robert von Anjou [standard edition].
Codices Selecti, CXIII. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2008. 34.4 x 48.5 cm, 144 pp + commentary.

An outstanding example of 14th-c. book illumination and courtly setting. This large-format MS, copied around 1340 contains the Regia Carmina of Convenevole da Prato (c.1275-1338), scholar, poet and teacher of Francesco Petrarch. In this epic poem Prato celebrates Robert d'Anjou, King of Sicily both as the rescuer of the church during the time of the papal schism and the ruler of a unified Italian state. The codex is a veritable caleidoscope of 14th customs and taste, richly decorated with 43 large-format miniatures on 72 pages and 29 floriated initials, highlighted with gold and silver. The miniatures depict the idealized kingdom of Robert through the use mythological allegories and virtues prized by the king. The second part of the MS contains references from St. Augustine supporting Robert as the ideal ruler of Italy and introduces the four cardinal virtues, the christian virtues and various allegorical devices from the arts. Bound in full leather. (Special subscription price valid until late Summer 2010) €4950 [3-201-01893-7] 

[Wolfenbüttel, Herzog August Bibliothek, Guelf. 84.5 Aug. 2º]
Das Reichenauer Perikopenbuch [standard edition].
Codices Selecti, CXIV. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2009. 18.5 x 28 cm.

Reichenau, beginning of the 11th c. Limited edition of 400 copies, bound in full leather. (special subscription price valid until 9/30/2010) €4950 [978-3-201-01906-4] 

[Wolfenbüttel, Herzog August Bibliothek, Guelf. 84.5 Aug. 2º]
Das Reichenauer Perikopenbuch [deluxe edition].
Codices Selecti, CXIV. Graz: Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 2009. 18.5 x 28 cm.

(Same as above but limited deluxe edition of 99 copies with front cover that reproduces the fantastic ivory relief of the original). (special subscription price valid until 9/30/2010) €6900 [978-3-201-01909-5] 

[Manutius, Aldus, printer]
Galeni librorum. Pars I-II.
Athens: Militos Editions, 2005. 21 x 29.5 cm. 2 vols, 1002 pp.

Facsimile of the first edition—Venice, 1525—of the celebrated work of Galen by Aldus Manutius, the greatest publishing enterprise of the Aldine house and a monument to the greatest physician of all antiquity. This authoritative treatise was accomplished through the collaboration of a most distinguished group of medical scholars who edited and collated the manuscripts brought together by Aldus. Included were Giovanni Batista Oppozzoni, John Clement, Edward Wotton, William Rose, Thomas Lupset, Thomas Linacre, and George Agricola. The numerous editions and translations of Galen’s works that were published later in the 16th century were based on the Aldine Greek text. Hardbound. €220  [960-8460-63-8] 

Besler, Basilius.
Hortus Eystettensis.
Scarmagno: Priuli & Verlucca Editori, 2007. 43.5 x 52 cm. 4 vols, 367 pp; 286 pp.

Deluxe facsimile of the Eichstatt, 1613 edition. Basilius Besler (1561-1629), a Nuremberg apothecary, was in charge of the gardens of Prince Bishop of Eichstatt. They were probably the first comprehensive botanical gardens devoted to flowering plants, many of which were imported from the Americas and the Ottoman Empire. Besler began work on a simple herbal devoted to plants of medicinal value, however with the patronage of Prince Bishop he was able to expand his work into a massive herbal—the Hortus Eytettensis (The Garden of Eichstatt). In this first large-folio natural history botanical, taking 16 years to complete, Besler documents the vast garden at Eichstatt, depicting each plant as it bloomed throughout the seasons. Over 1,000 varieties of flowers are depicted in 367 beautifully engraved and colored plates. The principal engraver was Wolfgang Kilian (1581-1662), but as many as 10 other artists may also have been involved. The Hortus Eystettensis is the first botanical in history to portray flowering plants as objects of beauty. Experts point out its special seminal importance, both deviating from the non-esthetic and awkward representations of preceding publications which focused on herbal subjects and setting the standard for all great flower books of the following centuries. Commentary by A. Menghini, D. Contin, K. Littger, W. Dressendorfer, & W.D. Müller Jahncke. Limited edition of 1500 numbered copies bound in full leather. €9600    (more info... )

[Cervantes Saavedra, Miguel de]
El ingenioso Hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha.
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, 2005.

Special commemorative facsimile edition celebrating the 400th anniversary of the first edition of this enormously important milestone in Spanish literature. Deluxe limited edition of 980 copies, bound in full leather with generous tooling. [84-86290-89-9] 

[Cervantes Saavedra, Miguel de]
2° parte del ingenioso caballero Don Quijote de la Mancha.
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, 2005.

Part II of the first edition. €1050  

[D’Anvers, Girard Thibaut]
Académie de l’Espée, 1628. Présentation de Gérard Six. Introduction de Claude Carliez, président de l’Académie de France. [deluxe edition].
Paris: Kubik Editions, 2005. 30 x 38 cm, 416 pp (57 plates).

By the end of the 16th century, one of the deadliest, most elegant, and often misunderstood forms of rapier combat in Spain was being perfected: the Spanish Circle or La Destreza. Sometimes called the Magic Circle, because all fighting takes place within an imaginary circle on the ground, this style inspired fear in those who faced it and awe in those who saw it properly employed. Girard Thibaut's Academie de l'Espée, published in 1628, and considered one of the most treasured books on fencing—a veritable bibliographic monument—provides an informative text accompanied by 57 large-format engravings representing all the "passes" (steps or footwork) of the Spanish School. Experts agree that Girard borrowed heavily from the work of Jeronimo de Caranza (De La Filosofia de las Armas, 1583), recognized as the founder of the Spanish School, and his student Don Luis Pacheco de Narvaez (Libro de las Grandezas de la Espada, 1600), who further developed many of Caranza’s teachings. Whether or not Girard himself was a fencing master is not clear, in any event he is credited with creating a lasting monument and tribute to, a "how-to” book on a complicated method of fighting that successfully endured for nearly 250 years after the rapier had been displaced throughout the rest of Europe. Girard beautifully captures the grandeur of the sport, the magnificence of the costumes and the intricate geometric designs which characterize the Spanish School. According to Girard, the circle's diameter is determined by the length of the swordsman standing straight with his heels together having his arm and index finger extended over his head. The imaginary circle moves with the swordsmen as they engage in combat, thus, La Destreza is fought in dynamic movement within the circle. Deluxe bibliophile edition, bound in leather, with marbled endpapers and slipcase. €575  [2-35083-001-2] 

[D’Anvers, Girard Thibaut]
Académie de l’Espée, 1628. Présentation de Gérard Six. Introduction de Claude Carliez, président de l’Académie de France. [standard edition].
Paris: Kubik Editions, 2005. 30 x 38 cm, 416 pp (57 plates).

(same as above but standard edition, hardbound, with reproduction of a fencing scene on the cover) €295  [2-35083-000-4] 

[Dürer prints, private collection]
La piccola passione xilografica - Norimberga 1511.
Studi e ricerchei, I Modena: Il Bulino, 2011 15 x 21 cm, 2 vols, 76, viii, 174 pp

Dürer’s Small Passion series is considered his most unified set, carried out with a simpler more direct treatment of the subject. Dürer expanded here the usual cycle of the Passion by providing preceding and subsequent scenes, beginning with the Fall of Man and ending with the Last Judgement. The series was published in 1511 as a book with Latin text on the versos, the same year in which the artist’s three large books appeared. Commentary by Mauro Bini. Deluxe facsimile edition limited to to 199 copies, bound in full leather with gold stamping; with clamshell case. €960 [978-88-86251-91-4]  (more info... )

[Vic (Catalunya), Biblioteca Episcopal, ms. 88]
Documentos del Cid en el Archivo Histórico Nacional.
Colección Grandes Documentos Históricos. Barcelona: Liber Millennium, 2007. 10 documents, various sizes.

A portfolio of documents issued on the 800th anniversary of the poem of El Cid. Limited edition of 995 copies. €1475  

Gutenberg, Johannes.
Biblia latina. La Bible de Gutenberg. Reproduction de l’exemplaire conservé à la bibliothèque Mazarine à Paris.
Paris: Kubik Editions, 2005. 31 x 41 cm, 2 vols, 648, 636 pp.

Deluxe full-color facsimile of the copy preserved in the Bibliothèque Mazarine, Paris, sign. Inc.1. Bound in full leather (in style of the 16th c.). €1490   

Jonston, John.
Historia naturalis de exanguibus acuaticis [et serpentibus]. Libri IV. Cum figurie aeneis. Joannes Jonstonus, Med. D. concinnavit. [private collection].
Burgos: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2007. 22 x 38 cm, 204 pp.

Deluxe facsimile of the Merian edition, Frankfurt & Munich, 1601 edition. Beautiful hand-colored copperplate engravings. Limited edition of 898 copies.  

Jonston, John.
Historia naturalis de piscibus et cetis. Libro V. Cum aeneis figuris Johannes Jonstonus, Med. Doctor concinnavit. [private collection].
Burgos: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2008. 22 x 38 cm, 314 pp.

Deluxe facsimile of the Merian edition, Frankfurt, n.d. Beautiful hand-colored copperplate engravings. Limited edition of 898 copies.  

Jonston, John.
Historia naturalis de quadrupedibus de Johannes Jonstonus.
Burgos: Siloé, Arte y Bibliofilia, 2005?

Deluxe facsimile of the Frankfurt, 1652 edition. Beautiful hand-colored copperplate engravings. Limited edition of 898 copies.  

[maps, Braun]
Civitates orbis terrarum. Archivo Histórico Nacional de España (Madrid); Universidad de Salamanca.
Salamanca: CM Editores, 2010-2013. 26 x 36 cm, 6 vols, 1300 pp.

Limited edition of 375 copies. Also available singly. €15000   

[maps, Ptolemy, Modena]
La cosmografia di Claudio Tolomeo (Atlante di Borso d’Este). [Modena, Estense Univ., alpha.X.1.3]
Ars Illuminandi. Modena: Il Bulino, 2005. 31 x 45 cm, 256 pp + commentary.

This illuminated MS is one of masterpieces of the Biblioteca Estense, purchased in 1466 for 100 gold florins by duke Borso d'Este (to whom it is dedicated) directly from the author, the German humanist Nicholas "Germanico". This new Latin version of Ptolemy's "Cosmographia" by Jacopo Angelo da Scarperia was accompanied by the 27 traditional maps re-elaborated by the author by using trapezoid projections. The text, written in two columns, is in humanistic characters, with the headings in gold capital letters underlined in red and illuminated initial letters. The text is divided into eight books; the first deals with theoretical subjects and representation of the globe while the others cover the regions of the earth. The double paged maps are framed by a gold border. The first plate shows the planisphere of the world while the other plates, preceded by an explanatory text, show the individual regions of the earth as they were then known. Commentary (in Italian) by Ernesto Milano, with transcriptions of the maps. Limited edition of 499 copies, bound in full leather with decorations. €4500  

[maps, Ptolemy, Vatican]
Tolomeo Vaticano. [Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, Urb. lat 174].
Colección Scriptorium. Madrid: Testimonio, 2006. 29.9 x 44.4 cm 266 pp + commentary.

This splendid MS preserved in the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana once belonged to Pope Alexander VII, whose coat of arms appears embossed in gold on the binding. The codex, written in round humanist script and executed in Florence during the 15th c., belongs to that genre of geographical works called "Ptolemys"—a series of maps encompassing the whole known world (named after the famous Egyptian geographer Claudius Ptolemaeus), and is a product of a period when maps were particularly vital for travel and trade. It is a masterpiece in every regard, ranging fron the quality of the text, the accuracy of the maps, to the highest quality of dyed parchment—done in a variety of colors—and lavish use of gold leaf for titles, frames and the representation of winds using human and other faces. It includes altogether 30 maps: 1 of the Old World, 13 of Europe (including modern Spain, Northern Europe, modern Italy), 4 of Africa and 12 of Asia, with maps often covering several pages. Sometime in the 16th c. the codex was enlarged with a second map of the world which included the recently discovered continent of America. Deluxe facsimile edition, bound in tooled leather with accompanying commentary. €4850  

[maps, Vallard]
Vallard Atlas. [San Marino (CA), The Huntington Library, HM 29].
Barcelona: M. Moleiro Editor, [in prep]. 39 x 28 cm, 68 pp + commentary.

World atlas, consisting of 15 nautical charts, copied on parchment, probably in Dieppe, France, either by a Portuguese cartographer or based on a Portuguese prototype, judging from the Portuguese influence on the geographical names. Charts 14 and 15 seem to be made by a second person since they differ in cartographic technique and artistic style. On title page, f. 1, under an armillary sphere is written “Nicolas Vallard de Dieppe, 1547.” Vallard was probably not the cartographer, but the first owner, whose coat of arms may be those in the center of the border illustrations on chart 11. The charts are lavishly illustrated with varying scenes, including ships, sea-beasts and sovereigns. The nomenclature, in a minuscule script, appears in black and red ink, while area names are executed in gold. Each chart has numerous compass roses with the usual 32 rhumb line network in black, red and green ink for the principal directions; the maps are oriented with south at the top. Limited edition of 987 copies bound in red leather with gold tooling.  

[maps, Vallseca]
The 1439 Portolan Chart by Gabriel de Vallseca.
Barcelona: Lumen Artis Editrice, 2010. 75 x 112 cm + 355 pp.

Gabriel de Vallseca, was the most important cartographer of the first half of the fifteenth century and his chart, The 1439 Portolan Chart by Gabriel de Vallseca, is now unanimously regarded as a historic monument of Mediterranean culture. Critical study (Cast-Eng) by Ramon J Pujades. Limited numbered edition of 950 copies. €958   

Zompini, Gaetano.
Le arti che vanno per via nella città di Venezia. 60 incisioni di Gaetano Zompini - 1753. A cura di Daniele Bini.
Modena: Il Bulino, 2011 43 x 30 cm, 2 vols, 60, 152 pp.

Collection of 60 etchings printed for the first time in 1753 by Antonio Maria Zanetti, Venetian publisher and intellectual. The work is a sort of illustrated encyclopedia of artists and craftmen who enlivened the streets of Venice in the 18th century. Gaetano Zompini "invented, designed, and recorded" the plates, while a friend, Don Questini, parish priest of Santa Maria Mater Domini, provided a descriptive rhymed triplet at the foot of each engraving. Gaetano Gherardo Zompini was born in 1700 in Nervesa, close to Treviso. In Venice, where he lived, he painted frescoes and oils for churches and palaces (like the dome of St. Nicholas of Tolentino), but also forecourts in Spain and Muscovy, some Bacchanalia for England and 8 mythological canvases painted for the Venetian Palace Zinelli which are now in Mosznej Castle, Czech Republic. Zompini embraced every kind of painting but was particularly prolific in the field of engraving. The "Venice of the Arts" of Gaetano Zompini is a capital city that lives the last gleam of its secular power, it's the Venice of Carlo Goldoni, great contemporary playwright. Just as Goldoni's comedies depict many facets of Venetian society, Zompini's illustrations graphically summarize daily habits and customs in the streets. The triplet in Venetian dialect accompanying each illustration completes the fresco, giving us detailed information about the material culture of mid-18th century Venice. Among the few known original specimens of Zompini's work is the one preserved in the Biblioteca Estense of Modena, the basis of this facsimile. Commentary by Danile Bini. Deluxe edition limited to 149 numbered copies printed on Fabriano paper Vergatona, handbound with a silk cover with a coat of arms impressed in gold; claim shell box. €1900  [978-88-86251-92-1]  (more info... )