It wouldn't be Halloween if I didn't write at least once about creepy creatures in art. (Did you really think I wasn't going to do it this year?) Well, HeadStuff just posted my article "Halloween Creatures in Five Centuries of Art", in which I take a look at how imaginings of witches, vampires, demons, and… Continue reading Halloween Creatures in Five Centuries of Art (HeadStuff)
The Office of the Dead (f.99) from the Belles Heures of Jean de Berry. French, c. 1405-9. The Cloisters Collection. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. (CC0 1.0) This is the last installment of 31 Days of Medieval Manuscripts. I hope everyone has enjoyed seeing and reading about all these beautiful books over the past… Continue reading The Office of the Dead – Day Thirty-One of Medieval Manuscripts
In preparation for Halloween, I decided that today's post should have something to do with something magical(ish) and eventually settled on alchemy. Alchemy is probably more of pseudo science than it is magic, but it was in Harry Potter, so I'll let this slide. Alchemical treatises and illustrations were common in manuscripts of the Western and… Continue reading Alchemical Manuscripts – Day Twenty-Nine of Medieval Manuscripts
The Hours of Catherine of Cleves is a fifteenth-century Dutch book of hours that was owned by a controversial duchess of Guelders. According to the Morgan Library and agreed upon by pretty much every other source I read, the manuscript is "the greatest Dutch illuminated manuscript in the world" (Morgan Library website). The Morgan's description… Continue reading The Hours of Catherine of Cleves – Day Twenty-Seven of Medieval Manuscripts
I have October on the mind today, so I figured I would run with that. Medieval books of hours, much like today's day planners (if anyone even uses those anymore), often included calendar pages for each month of the year. These weren't the sort of calendars you might write down your appointments in, however. Instead, they… Continue reading October in the Calendar Pages – Day Thirteen of Medieval Manuscripts
Instead of focusing on a manuscript or a component of one, I've chosen to write today about one of medieval history's most famous and prolific manuscript collectors - Jean de Berry (1340-1416).
Today's post is about the Morgan Library's Black Hours (Ms. M.493). It's a truly stunning manuscript that demonstrates the relatively rare but wonderful phenomenon of manuscripts on colored parchment.
The Hours of Jeanne d'Evreux, an early-14th century book made for the future Queen of France, introduces us to the Book of Hours, surprising scale in manuscripts, and the wacky world of marginalia.
In one of my last posts, I promised that I would talk about non-architectural grotesques. So meet the Hours of Jeanne d'Evreux, a fourteenth-century illustrated French prayer book by Jean Pucelle. It now resides at the Cloisters in New York, and I highly recommend going to see it. It is certainly not the only medieval… Continue reading Demons in Pen and Ink