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Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

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Book of Hours
France, Paris, ca. 1420-1425
MS M.1004 fol. 40v

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Christ: Nativity and Shepherds: Annunciation -- Christ Child, cross-nimbed, nude, His head on cushion, lies on draped bed extending left hand toward Virgin Mary, nimbed, with hands joined, kneeling at side of bed. Before her is open book on bed. Behind her, Joseph the Carpenter, wearing cap, holding tau staff in right hand and small cask in left hand, stands in doorway. At far left, ass and ox look in through window (?). In background, behind wattle fence, one of two shepherds, amid sheep, is hooded, standing and leaning on pedum, and the other sits on ground holding pedum in right hand, and raising left hand. Both look up at half-figure of angel emerging from cloud next to scroll with pseudo-inscription.
Margins decorated with border of foliate and floreate ornament. Within border four barbed quatrefoils, containing floreate decoration.
Added probably after 1251, heraldic shields of France impaling Savoy, Savoy, Savoy with label of three points impaling France in barbed quatrefoils in corners of margins.



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