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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Book of Hours
France, ca. 1420
MS M.960 fol. 43r

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Christ: Nativity -- Virgin Mary, nimbed, with joined hands raised, is seated on large cushion or mattress. Christ Child, crossed nimbus, swaddled, is on her lap. Behind them, Joseph the Carpenter, nimbed, seated on bench or stool, bends over holding bellows at fire. Kettle rests on stand over the fire. In foreground, midwife, nimbed and veiled, extends arms over basin. All are below roof supported by tall slender rods.
Exterior scene with wattle fence, behind which are ox and ass. Diaper background.
Margins decorated with border of floreate ornament of daisy and inhabited by butterflies and bird, possibly dove. Scroll in lower margin inscribed with motto POUR SON UOULOIR. Fragments of the motto repeated throughout border.

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