Saturday 26 December 2020

The Hoe Album II: More Cuttings Illuminated by Nebridio

Last week we saw that two cuttings illuminated by Frate Nebridio passed from the Ottley sale in 1838, to Robert Hoe, and eventually to the Houghton Library, where they form part of MS Typ 979.

Looking through the thirteen cuttings that comprise MS Typ 979, I found that eight of the others have also been attributed to Frate Nebridio [1]. This raises the possibility that they all passed together, as a group (via as yet unidentified intermediary owners), from Ottley to Hoe. So can any of these other Nebridio cuttings be identified in the Ottley sale catalogue?

Sunday 20 December 2020

The Hoe Album, I: Frate Nebridio

Following my blogpost in September in which I virtually reunited a cutting of an illuminated border at Harvard, with an historiated initial at the Fitzwilliam Museum illuminated by the Master of the Murano Gradual, I had  a series of email exchanges with Bill Stoneman, which have now borne unexpected but very satisfying fruit.

The Murano border is one of a series of illuminated cuttings at Harvard with consecutive shelfmarks and a common recent provenance, described in detail below. A few of these cuttings have previously been associated with William Young Ottley (especially those with "from the Cathedral of Como" inscriptions, like those discussed in this post), but I can now show that all of them come from the 1838 Ottley sale.

Saturday 12 December 2020

A Fake in Detroit: An Addendum

Regular readers will remember the fake miniature of Abelard (shown above) about which I posted a year ago , and mentioned again in February this year.

It was given to Detroit in March 1925:

"Given by Mrs. John S. Newberry (23 March 1925)."

I can now take the provenance back a little further.

Saturday 5 December 2020

Leaves from a Book of Hours Repurposed as an Armorial: An Addendum

In August last year I blogged about some 15th-century Flemish full-page miniatures, made for inclusion in a Book of Hours or Prayerbook, whose blank rectos had been re-used in England to make an armorial of English families. 

I knew of two leaves at the Free Library, Philadelphia (one of which is shown above), and the blog was prompted by the appearance of a third at a provincial English auction. 

The outer borders of ivy-leaves, and especially the inner frames around each miniature, are unusual. The frame is very narrow at the sides but is wider at the top and bottom, in red and blue respectively, each panel being divided in two by a thin vertical gold line, and with gold quarter-circles at the corners.

I've just found one more.