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les Enluminures

BOOK OF HOURS (Use of Rouen) with texts by JEHAN QUENTIN and JACQUES LE LIEUR

In Latin and French, illuminated manuscript on parchment
France, Rouen, completed 17 February 1517

TM 4
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274 folios, complete, on parchment, mostly quires of 4 folios (except ff. 1-6, ff. 55-64, ff. 273-274), written in brown ink, on 25 long lines (justification : 39 x 99 mm), ff. 273 and 274 contain 41 lines of text, text copied in an elegant liquid gold frame throughout, ruled in red, rubrics in red and blue, line-fillers composed of liquid-gold branch-like motifs or liquid gold decorative designs on blue or red grounds, small one-line initials in liquid gold on alternately red or blue grounds, 2-line initials in grisaille with white tracery and floral motifs on liquid gold grounds, 4 to 5-line initials in grisaille with white tracery and floral or fruit motifs on liquid gold grounds, 2 HISTORIATED INITIALS, overall in excellent general condition (stains to ff. 1, 135, 273 and 274; small restorations to parchment of ff. 1 to 46). Bound in a nineteenth-century black morocco binding, spine sewn on 5 thongs, title gilt on spine: "Livre d'heures", frame on boards composed of two blind-stamped filets, decorative gilt frieze on inner boards, marble pastedowns, purple cloth bookmark. Dimensions 67 x 138 mm.

Surely copied in Rouen, as indicated by a dated inscription--and confirmed by the style of illumination and the textual content--, this manuscript contains many unusual texts not commonly found in Books of Hours. Among these are two devotional treatises composed by Jehan Quentin, of which very few known printed copies are found in French institutions, and a Chant royal, attributed to Jacques Le Lieur, civic official and Rouennais poet.

Provenance

1. The Hours of the Virgin follow the Use of Rouen. This origin is confirmed by the scribe in the following rubric: Cy ensuyvent les heures Nostre Dame à l'usaige de Rouen au grant possible tout au long sans riens requerit. Avec les antiennes et oraisons des sainctz et sainctes de tout l'an selon l'ordre des moys ainsy qu'ilz eschiessent chacun jour en commançant a janvier. Et plusieurs oraisons tant en latin qu'en françoys, tant de Dieu que de la Vierge Marie sa benoiste mere. Et furent achevees d'escrire le jour de la cendre qui fut le xviie jour de fevrier en l'an de grace mil cinq cens xvii [...] (f. 56v).

Text

ff. 1-6v, Calendar in French (red, blue and gold). Many Rouen saints such as Godard, Victrice, Evod and Mellon, confirming the liturgical use of Rouen ;

f. 7, Rhymed verses: "Humble maintien joyeux et asseuré / Langaige meur amoureux veritable …-…Il pert son cueur et si pert Dieu";

ff. 7-7v, La manière de soy commander a Dieu ;

f. 7v, La maniere de soy commander à la Vierge Marie ;

ff. 7v-8, Quand on voudra commencer dire ou faire aucune chose ;

ff. 8-9, Les jours de la sepmaine moraliséz ;

ff. 9-15, Jehan Quentin, Ensuyt la maniere de bien vivre devotement et salutairement par chacun jour pour hommes et femmes de moyen estat composé par maistre Jehan Quentin docteur en theologie et penitencier de Paris. This unusual text in a Book of Hours is an excerpt from Jehan Quentin, La manière de bien vivre dévotement par chascun jour, published circa 1500 (see Literature below). Quentin was a member of those reformatory circles active in Paris at the end of the fifteenth century. It is interesting for the study of text circulation to see that a published text continued to be copied in devotional manuscripts;

ff. 15-27v, L'examen de conscience pour congnoistre a bien se confesser, composé par maistre Jehan Quentin, penitencier de Paris. Another text by Jehan Quentin, Examen de conscience pour soy congnoistre à bien se confesser, equally published circa 1500;

ff. 27v-29, S'ensuyvent les commandemens lesquelz chacun chrestien et chrestienne doit savoir et garder qui veult evader les peines d'enfer et paradis avoir. Les dix commandements (f. 28) ; Les cinq commandements de la Saincte Eglise (ff. 28-28v), Pater Noster en françoys (ff. 28v) ; La salutation angelicque (ff. 29); Les douze articles de la foi (ff. 29-29v);

f. 29v-30v, Les troys verités maistre Jehan Gerson, tresutiles et remede tresfacile a tout homme et femme pou yssir de peché et soy mettre tantost et incontinent en estat de salut selon la doctrine et opinion d'yceluy maistre Jehan Gerson, chancelier de Paris, homme tresexpert en matiere morale et de conscience ;

ff. 30v-33, S'ensuyt le testament du pèlerin ;

ff. 33-34, Oraison et protestation tresutille : "Sire Dieu tout puissant tout voyant toutes choses, congnoissant sapience de tout…";

ff. 34-35, Devote orayson a Dieu qui se doibt dire au matin et au soir : "Mon benoist Dieu, je croy de cueur et confesse de bouche…";
ff. 35v-39v, S'ensuyvent plusieurs devotes louenges, peticions et oraisons […]: "Quand tu te leveras de ton lit…" (f. 35) ; "Quand tu istras hors de ta maison…" (f. 36) ; "Quand tu entreras en l'eglise (f. 46) ; "Quand tu prendras de l'eau benite …"(f. 36) ; "Quand tu seras devant le crucifix…"(f. 36-36v) ; "Quand le prestre se retourne…" (f. 26v) [etc.] ;

ff. 40-52, Gospel Sequences, Luke (f. 41), Matthew (f. 42), Mark (f. 42), John (f. 44);

ff. 52-55v, Hours of the Cross, in French, rubrics in Latin: Matins (f. 52); Prime (f. 53v); Sext (f. 54v); None (f. 54v);

f. 56, Salute to the Virgin Mary : "Ave Maria ancilla trinitatis…" ;

f. 56v-101v, Office of the Virgin (use of Rouen), mixed with Hours of the Cross and Hours of the Holy Spirit, Matins of the Virgin, ff. 57-64; Lauds of the Virgin, ff. 64v-71v; Matins of the Cross, f. 72; Matins of the Holy Spirit, f. 73; Prime of the Virgin, ff. 74-77; Prime of the Cross, f. 77v; Prime of the Holy Spirit, f.78; Terce of the Virgin, ff. 79-81; Terce of the Cross, ff. 81v-82; Terce of the Holy Spirit, f. 82v; Sext of the Virgin, ff. 83-85; Sext of the Cross, ff. 85v-86 ; Sext of the Holy Spirit, f. 86v; None of the Virgin, ff. 87-89; None of the Cross, ff. 89v-90 ; None of the Holy Spirit, f. 90v ; Vespers for the Virgin, ff. 91-95; Vespers of the Cross, ff. 95v-96 ; Vespers of the Holy Spirit, f. 96v ; Compline of the Virgin, ff. 97-100 ; Compline for the Cross, ff. 100v-10; Compline of the Holy Spirit, f. 101v (lacks rubric);

ff. 102-116v, Penitential Psalms and litany (ff. 111v-116v);

ff. 117- 149, Office of the Dead. Responses to the readings are: 1) Credo quod redemptor, 2) Qui lazarum resuscitavit, 3) Domine quando veneris, 4) Heu michi domine, 5) Ne recorderis peccata mea, 6)Libera me domine de viis inferni, 7) Peccantem me quotidie, 8) Requiem eternam dona, 9) Libera me domine ;

ff. 149-150v, "Salutatio animarum dicenda in cymiterio" ;

ff. 150v-152, Suffrages (Holy Trinity, Saints);

ff. 152v-153, Salva sancta facies;

ff. 153v-157v, Hours of the Conception of the Virgin;
ff. 157v-161, Hours of Saint Katherine (lacking rubric for Sext) ;

ff. 161-166, Hours of Saint Barbara ;

ff. 166-175v, Prayer for the Five Wounds of Christ: "Domine Jesu Christe eterna dulcedo…";

ff. 175v-176v, Seven verses of Saint Gregory: "O Domine Jesu Christe adoro te in cruce...";

f. 176v-177, Prayer: "O Domine Jesu Christe pater dulcissime rogo te amore...";

ff. 177-179v, Prayer for the Five Wounds of Christ: "Laus honor et gloria et gratiarum...";

ff. 179v-182, Prayer of saint Bernard: "O bone Jesu, o dulcis Jesu...";

ff. 182-183v, Prayer to the Lord and to the angels: "Deus propicius esto michi peccatori...";

ff. 183v-184v, Verses of St. Bernard ;

ff. 184v-187v, Obsecro te ;

ff. 187v-189v, O intemerata ;

ff. 189v-191, Prayer to the Virgin: "O illustrissima et excellentissima gloriosa...";

ff. 191-194v, Five prayers to the Virgin: "Mediatrix dei et hominum et fons..." ; "Auxiliatrix dei et hominum..."; "Reparatrix debilium..." ; "Illuminatrix cecorum..." ; "Alleviatrix peccatorum...";

ff. 194v-200v, Rosary for Christ and the Virgin Mary;

ff. 200v-203, to the Virgin: "Ave sanctissima maria mater dei regina celi..."; "Ave virgo gratiosa stella..."; "O gloriosissima regina..."; "Stabat mater...";

ff. 203-204, Seven Joys of the Virgin: "Gaude flore virginali...";

f. 204v, Five feasts of the Virgin: "Ave cujus conceptio..."; "Ave cujus nativitas..."; "Ave pia humilitas" ; "Ave vera virginitas..."; "Ave preclara...";

ff. 205-219, Miscellaneous prayers in Latin and French: "Deus qui nos conceptionis..."; "Ave fuit prima salus..." ; "Salve Regina...." ; "Ave Regina celorum..." ; "Alma redemptoris..."; "Regina celi letare..." ; "Inviolata integra..." ; "Missus est Gabriel angelus..."; "Mere Dieu qui fustes mise et assise..." ; "Dame, je vous rendz le salut..." ; "Ave Maria plene de bonté..." ; "Je vous supplie tous anges...";

ff. 219-259, Suffrages and added prayers ;

ff. 259-264v, Antiphons and prayers for the moveable feasts;

ff. 265-267v, Hours of the Holy Sacrament;

ff. 267v-270, Le symbole sainct Athanaise : "Quicumque vult salvus esse...";

ff. 270v-271v, Prayer to the "quindecim auxiliatores"; incipit, "Conditor et redemptor humani generis...";

ff. 271v-272v, Rhymed verse "Noble creature fay joyeuseté / le Dieu de Nature print humanité...";

ff. 273-273v, Chant royal in six couplets: "Je te salue en toute reverence / Dame regnant pres de la Trinité..."; envoy: "Jesus le fruict de ton ventre et des cieux..."; Although not signed, this Chant royal is attributed to Jacques Le Lieur (c. 1475-1550),civic official in Rouen and royal secretary for King Francis I but also poet and rhétoriqueur (Sonet, Répertoire, no. 870). Both the chants royaux and the ballades were amongst the preferred verse forms during the poetic Puys organized in the first half of the sixteenth century, such as the famous Puy de Palinods of Rouen (or Puy de la Conception de la Vierge). Jacques Le Lieur was an active participant in these Palinods.

f. 274, Ballade in 3 couplets: "Glorieuse vierge pudicque / Qui par vostre conception..."; envoy : "Dame en vostre commission...";

f. 274v, Ballade in 3 couplets: "Je te supply Vierge pucelle / Celle qui nous rendit la vie..."; envoy: "Dame vueilles estre servie...".

Illustration

f. 57, Annunciation : historiated initial, Matins, Hours of the Virgin;

f. 64v, Visitation : historiated initial, Lauds, Hours of the Virgin.

Though tiny in size, these two historiated initials are of fine quality and are similar to illumination localized in Rouen. Compare a Book of Hours, also of oblong format and with similar decoration, (Plummer, 1982, no. 124; New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, M, 646) by an unidentified artist (close to ours) and by an associate of the Master of Petrarch's Triumphs working in Rouen, c. 1510.

Literature

Dautheuil, L. "Jean Quentin, humaniste, évêque elu de Senlis", in Comptes rendus et Mémoires de la Societé d'Histoire et d'Archéologie de Senlis, 1967-1968, pp. 55-83.

Dictionnaire des lettres françaises. Moyen Age [DLF], col. 835-836

Dictionnaire de spiritualité ascétique et morale [DSAM], vol. XII, col. 2727-2729.
Jolimont, A.-T. de. Notice historique sur la vie et les oeuvres de J. Le Lieur, 1847.

Plummer, John. The Last Flowering. French Painting in Manuscripts, 1420-1530 . New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, 1982.

Quentin, Jehan. Examen de conscience pour soy congnoistre a bien se confesser, composé par maistre Jehan Quentin, pénitencier de Paris, [Paris], [circa 1500].

Quentin, Jehan. La Maniere de bien vivre devotement par chascun jour, [S.l.], [circa 1500] (BnF, R- 97487).

Quentin, Jehan. L'Orelage de devocion, composé en françoys par maistre Jehan Quentin, [Paris], E. Jehannot, [circa 1500].

Renaudet, A. Préreforme et humanisme à Paris au temps des guerres d'Italie, Paris, 1953, pp. 174-176.

Sonet, Jean. Repertoire d'incipit de prières en ancien français, Genève, Droz, 1956.

Stewart, L. "The chant royal, a study of the evolution of the genre", in Romania, XCVI, 1975, pp. 481-496.

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