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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Book of Hours
England, probably Oxford, ca. 1325-1330
MS M.700 fol. 3v

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Virgin Mary and Christ Child -- Virgin Mary, decorated nimbus, crowned, veiled, wearing girdle and vair-lined mantle, sits on bench, holds red round object (fruit ?) in raised right hand, and supports with her left arm Christ Child, decorated crossed nimbus, with right hand raised in blessing and book in left hand, standing on her lap.
They are flanked by veiled female attendant and a couple, Hawisia du Bois, veiled, and her husband, both wearing heraldic garments (du Bois family of Lincoln). All kneel as donors with joined hands raised.
Figures against gold background, beneath ogee arch of trefoil cusps with heraldic spandrels (argent, two bars and in chief three besants azure, and argent, two bars and in chief three besants gules).
Frames, decorated with geometric ornament of x's and with sprigs of three pointed trefoliate leaves, include barbed quatrefoils enclosing busts of two crowned kings at center of top and bottom, busts of two veiled crowned queens at center of sides, and enclosing four heraldic escutcheons at corners, two representing du Bois (argent, two bars and a canton gules) and two others of du Bois variant (argent, two bars gules, on a canton of the second a mullet of the field).

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