(Lucerne: Faksimile Verlag Luzern, 1984). 302 x 216 mm. (11 7/8 x 8 1/2").  leaves (in the facsimile). Two volumes (the facsimile plus a commentary volume in German). Commentary by Raymond Cazelles and Johannes Rathofer. No. 755 OF 980 COPIES.
Publisher's replica red morocco binding, covers with gilt-ruled border and cresting floral frame, coat of arms with coronet at center, raised bands, spine gilt in compartments with floral spray centerpiece and leafy frond cornerpieces, green silk pastedowns, all edges gilt. Commentary volume in red morocco-backed green silk. Both housed in an acrylic case with slide-out panel. With numerous illuminated initials, many WITH marginal extensions, 65 SMALL MINIATURES (measuring approximately 80 x 50 mm.) AND 66 FULL-PAGE MINIATURES. In nearly mint condition.
This is an excellent facsimile of one of the greatest--and certainly the most famous--Medieval Book of Hours. It was commissioned by Jean, Duke of Berry (1340-1416), from the great illuminators Paul, Herman, and Jean Limbourg, who had previously created the "Belles Heures" for the duke. They began work on this masterpiece around 1412, but all three brothers died in 1416, probably from plague, leaving the manuscript incomplete. The duke also died in that year, broken by the defeat of the French monarchy at Agincourt, and the manuscript passed into the hands of his great-nephew, King Charles VII of France. An artist known only as the "Intermediate Painter"worked on some of the illustrations: costume details in some of the miniatures indicate they were executed in the mid-15th century. In 1485, Charles, Duke of Savoy, commissioned painter Jean Colombe to complete the book of hours. The large miniature of the Man of Sorrows on folio 75 depicts the duke and his duchess kneeling on either side of the wounded Christ. Cazelles and Rathofer identify the calendar miniature of November as Colombe's sole work. Other indications that a painting was done or finished by Colombe is the presence of an architectural frame or the use of an intense blue in the landscape. In addition to being far more lavishly illustrated than the usual book of hours, the "Tres Riches Heures" is distinguished by its quarto size. It is an impressive tome, not a small book for personal devotion. (ST12465)
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PJP Catalog: 70.511