• Spanish Illumination





    Origin / Age

    Avila, Castile; c1482-1492


    13.4cm (h) x 8cm (w)


    An oval topped miniature from the corner of a decorated border of an immense choirbook. It is trimmed to edges of the frame, with Gideon dressed as a young man in armour, kneeling and gazing at the sky as a blue-winged angel descends towards him holding a banderole, his sheep skin and shield before him, all before a wooded hilly landscape.  The banderole probably reads -“Dominus Tecum Virorum Fortissime” – The Lord is with you, most valiant (of men). Judges 6:12

    This is from a grand choirbook produced for Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile , also known as the Catholic monarchs , who went on to unify Spain. J.D. Bordona in his Spanish Illumination, 1930, p. 61, describes it as “one of the most sumptuous and artistic series of choir-books in all Spain”, and attributed it to the royal illuminator Juan de Carrion, who worked in Avila from the 1470s. It was presented by the royal couple to the Dominican convent of Santo Tomás Aquino, in Avila, Old Castile, as part of a royal campaign of rebuilding there and, later, their only son Prince Juan was buried there. By the nineteenth century a large number of leaves had become scuffed and were partly repainted in an amateurish fashion. By 1918, two cuttings were in the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge (MS. 293 a-b). Other cuttings can be traced in the Museo Arqueológico in Madrid (Exposición de codices miniados Españoles, 1929, nos. civ-cvii and fig. 68) and the Zeileis collection (see Più Ridon le carte, II, 2002, pp. 414-15).

    Condition: Wear as seen, six small pinpricks to reverse in area of angel.

    Provenance: Previously with Bruce Ferrini.


    Please note: Price does NOT include delivery costs.

  • Spanish Illumination

  • Spanish Illumination

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