Ink, tempera, and gold on vellum
Sheet: 56.5 x 41.9 cm (22 1/4 x 16 1/2 in.)
Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1953.641
This leaf once formed part of a deluxe choir psalter produced for the Franciscan convent of Bologna (founded 1229). The initial E with a portrait of King David illustrates the introduction to Psalm 80: Exultate Deo (Rejoice to God). King David, as the author of the Psalms, is prominently illustrated in psalter initials. An abundant spray of colorful acanthus leaves with clambering Franciscan friars provides decoration for the lower left margins and confirmation that it was made for Franciscan use.
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