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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Roman de la Rose
France, Paris, ca. 1340
MS M.503 fol. 1r

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Half-page miniature divided into four sections:
1) Roman de la Rose: Scene, Lover sleeping -- At upper left, nude Lover, head on pillow, right arm next to head, reclines in draped bed. Flowering rose bush next to the bed; Danger as man raising right hand, holding club with left hand next to the rose bush.
2) Roman de la Rose: Scene, Lover dressing -- At upper right, Lover, putting on left shoe, sits on draped bed. At right is crenellated wall with portal.
3) Roman de la Rose: Scene, Lover walking -- At lower left, Lover, gesturing with both hands, walks next to stream; four trees are in background, one with goldfinch.
4) Roman de la Rose: Scene, Lover approaching Garden -- At lower right, Lover, gesturing with both hands looks toward crennellated wall with painted personifications, behind which are trees, two with birds, including goldfinch. Stream flows from base of the wall.
All scenes with gold background, all enclosed in red and blue frame with gold corners.
Below miniature in left column, champide initial M with ivy foliate ornament, at beginning of text, MAINTES GENS DIENT QUE EN SONGES / NA SE FABLES NON ET MENCONGES .
All enclosed by rectilinear frame decorated with ivy leaves, interspersed with eight medallions surrounding quatrefoils enclosing (from upper right) nude Lover, head on pillow, reclining in draped bed; busts of women and men, some gesturing with one hand, one wearing hood, one veiled, three damaged and difficult to see.

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