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Mistress Phyllis, in a Book of Hours

Mistress Phyllis, in a Book of Hours

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1260

Shelfmark: Egerton MS 1151

Item number: f.159r

Length: 16

Width: 10.2

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

Early books of hours have types of pictures and decoration which tend not to appear in ones made later on, after the programme of subject matter for pictures and decoration became established. This book of hours includes unusual pictures and texts, such as the Hours of the Holy Spirit and of the Passion, which were exceptional in a prayerbook of the mid-13th century. Some of the texts were recommended in contemporary treatises for the devotions of anchoresses, suggesting that it was made originally for such a religious woman. Its calendar of saints' feasts include many that were associated with the West Midlands. This page of the Book of Hours bears inscriptions of later owners. In the early 16th century, it was owned by ownership by a Mysterys Felys (Mistress Phyllis), who requests, ?If you find my book take the pain to bring it home to me.? Later owners included Robert Colston of Nottingham.

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