(Modena: Franco Cosimo Panini Editore/Faksimile Verlag Luzern, 2004). 162 x 105 mm. (6 3/8 x 4 1/8").  pp. (in the facsimile). Two volumes (including commentary volume in German). No. 7 OF 980 COPIES.
SUMPTUOUS REPLICA ROYAL PURPLE VELVET, SET WITH LARGE JEWELS, covers adorned with gilded metal filigree lozenge centerpiece containing a large oval lapis lazuli, gilded cornerpieces set with cabochon rose quartz, two golden clasps featuring silver hearts with chain link fasteners incorporating a rectangular piece set with a blue stone, edges gilt and gauffered in a diapered pattern. In a padded, satin-lined blue velveteen jewel box with silver and enamel heraldic crest on the upper cover (the commentary volume concealed beneath the velveteen lining). Rubrics and Calendar text in blue and gold, Kalends and a handful of four- to five-line initials in gold on a blue and green background with foliate decoration, numerous two-line initials in colors and gold, 12 medallions depicting the labors of the month, seven six-line historiated initials in gold accompanied by a floral quarter panel border in pink, blue, green, and yellow with many gold bezants, five large historiated initials in an elaborate full border teeming with flowers, putti, and gold bezants, with a small vignette in the tail-edge border, and MORE THAN 20 EXQUISITE MEDALLION PORTRAITS of various sizes, as well as FOUR LARGE ARCH-TOPPED MINIATURES in golden frames surrounded by an extremely ornate border full of fruit, flowers, garlands, birds, putti, bezants, and much gold, with similar vignette and medallions. ◆In mint condition.
This is a splendid facsimile of the Book of Hours given by Lorenzo the Magnificent (1449-92) to his daughter Luisa (1477-88) in 1485. The text was written by the distinguished humanist scribe Antonio Sinibaldi, who did a great deal of work for the Medicis and who signed and dated the manuscript. To provide the illumination, Lorenzo commissioned Francesco Rosselli (1445-ca. 1513), who had worked on the famed Bible of Federico da Montefeltro. The result was a jewel of Renaissance art, which was then wrapped in velvet and gems before being presented to the young recipient. The illumination was exceedingly elaborate, the borders representing a memorable wealth of decoration. After the death of Luisa and Lorenzo, the manuscript at some point ended up in the Netherlands--Ferdinand de Merode, Comte de Montfort, inscribed his name on the flyleaf in 1660. The book fell into the hands of infamous book thief Guglielmo Libri in the 19th century, and was subsequently purchased by the 4th earl of Ashburnham. After the earl's death, the Italian government acquired the work and returned it to Florence, where the original presently resides in the Medicean Laurentian Library. (ST12203)