You are in Introduction. Click here to skip the navigation.
British Library
Digital Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts
 Detail from the Roman de la Rose
About Simple search Manuscript search Advanced search  Virtual exhibitions Glossaries Contact us  Main
print Print this page
home Home
site search Search British Library website
back Back

search tips  Search tips



Detailed record for Additional 35254G

Title Cutting from a Gradual (Temporale)
Origin Italy, Central (Florence)
Date c. 1410-1506
Language Latin
Script Gothic
Artists The initial 'P' and frame attributed to Lorenzo Monaco (? Siena c. 1370 - Florence 1423/1424); the Nativity scene attributed to Attavante (Castelfiorentino, 1452-1520/1525) (see Kanter 2004).
Decoration 1 historiated, foliate and zoomorphic initial 'P' in colours and gold, of the Nativity and the Annunciation to the Shepherds watched by the half-length figure of an angel amongst the foliage of the letter (bottom right), within a mosaic-like frame with six portrait busts in quatrefoil medallions, introducing the introit to the third Mass for Christmas Day 'Puer natus est'. On the reverse, four four-line red staves, musical notation and partial text 'lauda filia iheru sa / lem ecce rex tuus / venit sanctus et / salvator mundi'.
Dimensions in mm 400 x 325
Official foliation Parchment cutting in a double-sided window mount, foliated as 'G'.
Form Mounted parchment cutting kept in a box with other cuttings and leaves.
Binding N/A
Provenance The Camaldolese monastery of Santa Maria degli Angeli, Florence: the miniature was cut from the missing f. 56v of Florence, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana Codice Corale 18, the first of a four-volume Gradual (Temporale, from the first Sunday of Advent to the Saturday after the third Sunday of Lent) with kyriale, dated 1410 (f. 140v). This date records the completion of the writing of the liturgical text and penwork initials. The Gradual's historiated initials were drawn soon after this date but not painted. Attavante degli Attavanti completed the illumination of the Gradual between 1505 and 1506 (see Kanter 2004).
William Young Ottley (b. 1771, d. 1836), writer on art and collector: his sale, 11 May 1838, lot 195 purchased for £4 by Baker according to an annotated Western Manuscripts departmental copy of the sale catalogue; Inscribed in a 19th-century hand (the same as Add. 35354C verso) 'Attributed by Mr Ottley to / "Pietro Perugino". / Lot 195 at the sale of his miniatures / at Sotheby's May 11 1838. It was there / mounted on [illeg.] ! / from 1856 / K. [illeg.]' and 'Wilson sale at Sotheby's lot 94 May 18 1805' (f. G verso).
John Malcolm of Poltalloch (b. 1805, d. 1893), art collector and landowner: acquired between the first publication of the catalogue of his collection in 1869 and the second edition of 1876 (see Robinson 1876).
Purchased by the Department of Prints and Drawings of the British Museum in 1895.
Transferred to the Department of Manuscripts of the British Museum in 1899.
Notes Italian cutting.
The present cutting is kept in a box with Add. 35254A-F. To see this cutting in the Manuscripts Reading Room order Add. 35254A-G.
Musical notation.
Other cuttings from this Gradual include Copenhagen, The Royal Museum of Fine Arts, TU 3.52-54; London, British Museum 1860-6-16-42; New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1999.391; Paris, Musée du Louvre, R. F. 28970; and Vatican City, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, cod. Ross. 1192.34, 35, and 37.
Select bibliography J. C. Robinson, Descriptive Catalogue of Drawings by the Old Masters, forming the Collection of John Malcolm of Poltalloch, Esq, 2nd ed. (London: Chiswick Press, 1876), p. 277, app. ii, no. 3.

Catalogue of Additions to the Manuscripts in the British Museum in the Years 1894-1899 (London: Trustees of the British Museums, 1901), pp. 223-24.

Laurence Kanter, 'Lorenzo Monaco', in Laurence B. Kanter and others, Painting and Illumination in Early Renaissance Florence 1300-1450 (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1994), pp. 273-74, fig. 112.

Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, I corali del monastero di Santa Maria degli Angeli, ed. by Mirella Levi D'Ancona, Angela Dillon Bussi, Anna Rita Fantoni and Divo Savelli (Florence: Centro di, 1995, p. 69.

Iter Liturgicum Italicum, ed. by Giacomo Baroffio (Padua: CLEUP, 1999), p. 104.

Sandra Hindman and others, Manuscript Illumination in the Modern Age: Recovery and Reconstruction (Evanston, IL: Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, 2001), pp. 82, 91 [exhibition catalogue].

Laurence B. Kanter, 'Lorenzo Monaco', in Dizionario Biografico dei Miniatori Italiani: Secoli IX-XVI, ed. by Milvia Bollati (Milan: Bonnard, 2004), 399-401 (p. 401).

* * *
Nativity and the Annunciation to the Shepherds

Nativity and the Annunciation to the Shepherds

print Print this page
home Home
site search Search British Library website
back Back
top Back

About Simple search Manuscript search Advanced search
Virtual exhibitions Glossaries Accessibility Contact us Main

All text is © British Library Board and is available under a CC-BY Licence except where otherwise stated