(French, active c. 1450–70)
Ink, tempera and gold on vellum
Each leaf: 11.2 x 9 cm (4 7/16 x 3 9/16 in.)
The Jeanne Miles Blackburn Collection 2001.78
The images and decorated initials in the book helped users navigate to sections they needed while also offering details to provoke meditation and prayer, leading to books of hours sometimes being referred to as “painted prayers.”
The style of this miniature, with its oval faces, abundant draperies, and use of border roundels, follows very closely the characteristics of the Master of Adélaïde de Savoie, who takes his name from a book in Chantilly (Musée Condé, MS. 1362). His activity points to Poitiers in western France as a possible place of production for this piece. The miniature features the unusual placement of roundels showing scenes taken from Christ's Passion against an episode from the life of the Virgin. The main miniature, the Presentation in the Temple, depicts the bringing of the infant Jesus to the Temple forty days after his birth to be consecrated according to Jewish law. During the ceremony, the temple's priest, Simeon, foretold that "Mary's heart would be pierced through her child." The roundels visually dovetail the central miniature.
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