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Historiated Initial With Job On The Dunghill, In A Bible

Historiated Initial With Job On The Dunghill, In A Bible

Medium: Ink, pigments and gold on vellum

Date: 1220

Shelfmark: Royal MS 1 C.i

Item number: f.122v

Length: 34

Width: 21

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

Most medieval Bibles contains the 'Vulgate' version of the text, which was translated from Hebrew into Latin around the year 400 by St. Jerome, or revisions of it. This copy was illuminated by a professional Parisian illuminator who seems to have lived near the cathedral of Notre Dame, and who signed his name, 'Master Alexander', in another manuscript. By the 13th century this manuscript was in England, and in 1449 it was owned by the church of St. Michael's, Crooked Lane, London. Job was a worthy man who believed that faith could overcome adversity: the devil therefore put him to the test by destroying his property and killing his servants and children. He is usually depicted in medieval art sitting on a dunghill, covered with sores, visited by his wife and friends, as in this initial 'U'.

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