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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Book of Hours
France, Paris, 1480-1500
MS M.179 fol. 60v

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Virgin Mary: Annunciation -- Standing in front of canopy with drapery, Virgin Mary, nimbed, raising right hand, touching with left hand open book on prie-dieu, glances toward Archangel Gabriel, raising right hand, holding scepter with left hand, next to inscription AVE GRA(TIA) PLENA DOMIN(US) TECU(M). Above, half figure of God, rays as cross nimbus, raising both hands, appears in window from which rays emerge. Dove of Holy Ghost flies amid rays toward Virgin Mary.
Margin, left:
1) Joachim and Anna: at Golden Gate -- Anna, nimbed, veiled, and wearing wimple, embraces Joachim. Behind them is gate; city is in background. Scene in architectural frame.
2) Virgin Mary: Birth and Virgin Mary: Bathing -- Anna, nimbed, reclines in canopied bed, extending her right arm toward cup or glass held by woman next to bed. In foreground, infant Virgin Mary, nimbed, is held above basin by midwife, wearing headdress. Scene in architectural frame.
3) Virgin Mary: Presentation -- Virgin Mary, nimbed, with joined hands, ascends stairs toward High Priest standing in doorway. Joachim, wearing hat, and Anna, nimbed, veiled and wearing wimpole, stand behind the staircase. Landscape in background with buildings, trees, and hills. Scene in architectural frame.
Margin, lower:
Virgin Mary: Espousal -- High Priest, wearing pointed hat and clerical garb (stole, surplice) is flanked by Virgin Mary, nimbed, and Joseph the Carpenter, and holds, with his hands, their right hands. They are flanked by two women wearing hats, and by two men wearing hats.
Margin, right:
Angels playing fiddle and lute in two niches in column.

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