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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Piccolomini breviary
Italy, Lombardy, ca. 1475
MS M.799 fol. 80r

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Shepherds: Adoration -- Nude Christ Child, crossed nimbus, reclining amid rays, extends arms and looks upward toward Virgin Mary, nimbed and veiled, with joined hands raised, kneeling beside Him. Three shepherds are at His head. Ruined shed in background. All within initial C, decorated with foliate ornament.
In upper margin, cross-shaped lozenge enclosing nimbed head of six-winged seraph, flanked by flowers and gold balls.
In lower margin, cross-shaped lozenge enclosing nimbed head of seraph, flanked by two birds, including woodpecker, amid floreate ornament and gold balls. Lozenges linked by blue band decorated with foliate ornament.
Beginning of collect for first Vespers on Christmas Day.
Pen-flourished initials.

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