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Historiated Initial With Sts. Peter And John, In 'The Bible Of Robert De Bello'

Historiated Initial With Sts. Peter And John, In 'The Bible Of Robert De Bello'

Medium: Ink, pigments and gold on vellum

Date: 1235

Shelfmark: Burney MS 3

Item number: f.473r

Length: 274

Width: 199

Scale: Millimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

This Bible belonged to, and was presumably made for, Robert de Bello (i.e. 'of Battle', near Hastings), who was abbot of the Benedictine abbey of St. Augustine, Canterbury, from 1224-53. He was clearly concerned to have an accurate text--it has been corrected carefully throughout--and his influence may be responsible for some of the very unusual imagery included among the initials. Both initial 'S's shows saints Peter and John. In the left-hand one John hands a book to Peter, below which are the children who are referred to several times in the short Epistle. In the right-hand initial Peter sits writing (his keys hanging from his wrist), instructed by John.

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