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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Italy, Florence, 1392-1399
MS M.653 no. 1 (I.8)

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Initial P
Christ: Nativity -- Within initial P, Virgin Mary, veiled, holds Christ Child, partially wrapped in blanket, suckling her breast. Joseph, kneeling on ground, grasps right foot of Christ Child and kisses it.
Figures are all nimbed and seated before cave in side of hill, with awning above mouth, in which ox and ass eat hay in manger. Above cave, four angels descend. Shepherd, carrying stick, appears from behind hill, on which flowers, including lily, and fruit trees grow.
Head of Isaiah, wearing hat, and head of another male figure appear in stem of initial P decorated with foliate ornament.
Historiated border decorated with foliate and floreate ornament frames text.
Shepherds: Annunciation -- In left corner lower border, in foliate roundel, angel appears to two shepherds, kneeling, holding staffs. Two sheep flank foliage in center, and in right corner of lower border, in foliate roundel, third shepherd plays bagpipes. Dog (only head visible) looks on.

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