The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Sunday, February 25, 2018

Christie's Valuable Manuscripts & Printed Books Sale will be led by a previously unrecorded Book of Hours
Book of Hours, use of Paris, in Latin and French, Illuminated manuscript on vellum [Tours, c.1515]. Estimate: £500,000 - £800,000. Photo: Christie's Images Ltd 2013.

LONDON.- On 20 November 2013 the Christie’s London sale of Valuable Manuscripts and Printed Books will be led by a previously unrecorded Book of Hours, illuminated throughout by the Master of Claude de France (estimate: £500,000 – 800,000). The selection of printed books dating from the 15th to 20th century is highlighted by a first edition of the most important scientific work of the 16th century, Nicolaus Copernicus’ De revolutionibus orbium coelestium, libri VI (estimate: £400,000 – 600,000). The sale will also feature a single-owner collection representative of centuries of medieval manuscript production, with vellum leaves ranging from the earliest specimen of Beneventan script currently in private hands — also the oldest manuscript Old Testament ever recorded in Beneventan minuscule — (estimate: £35,000 -50,000), to the missing pages from the only copy of the most important biography of Thomas Becket by Herbert of Bosham (estimate:£30,000 – 50,000).

The collection also features: religious fragments in Carolingian, Visigothic and Anglo-Saxon script; a leaf from a 14th-century pattern book; intact books including a magnificent 12th-century glossed Genesis in its original binding (estimate: £200,000 - 300,000); a striking English 13th-century Bible illuminated by the Sarum Master (estimate: £100,000 - 150,000) and a charming Book of Hours by the Talbot Master (estimate: £45,000 - 70,000).

Leading the sale is a previously unrecorded Book of Hours, illuminated throughout by the Master of Claude de France (estimate: £500,000 – 800,000). This artist, named after two manuscripts he painted for the queen of France, wife of François I, was active in the early decades of the 16th century. He worked with an unsurpassed subtlety and delicacy of handling and colour and his miniatures combine a sophisticated naturalism with beguiling charm and immediate appeal. This jewel of a manuscript comes from the property of a Scottish nobleman and has royal provenance; it is believed to have been created for Claude’s sister Renée and was later in the collection of Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales.

Further highlights include a rare English folding almanac (estimate: £100,000 – 150,000). This previously unrecorded example dates to the 15th century and is still in its original binding. It is one of only thirty of its kind to survive. A portable compendium of calendrical, computational, medical and astrological material, the folding almanac would most likely have been worn by a physician. Folding almanacs – or girdle books – were worn at the waist and were brought out when consulting patients. Featuring tables of solar and lunar eclipses and a Zodiac Man, this almanac provides a fascinating insight into the fundamental importance of astrology in medieval medicine.

The eclectic nature of the sale is exemplified by a splendid 16th-century Genealogy of the kings of England from William the Conqueror to Elizabeth I prepared by Morgan Coleman for Francis Bacon, Viscount St Alban (estimate: £50,000 - 80,000). Published in Baconiana in 1949, it was argued that the manuscript supported the theory of Bacon’s royal birth and his rightful role as successor to Elizabeth.

Leading the selection of printed books is a first edition of the most important scientific publication of the 16th century, Nicolaus Copernicus’ De revolutionibus orbium coelestium, libri VI (estimate: £400,000 – 600,000). De revolutionibus placed for the first time the sun at the centre of the universe and described the earth's diurnal rotation and its annual rotation around the sun. Copernicus denounced the geocentric belief in the immobility of the earth as based on mere appearance. In order to entertain an idea such as a heliocentric universe Copernicus had to break with virtually all current knowledge: astronomical, metaphysical, theological and, most basically, simple sensory perception. The geocentric system of Ptolemy had held sway for over a millennium, and theological dogma considered geocentrism as the very foundation of the special relationship between God and man. Aware of the radical nature of his theory, Copernicus composed an introduction in which he attempted to trace historical antecedents for his basic tenets. He cites antecedents for the mobility of the earth in Pythagoras and Heraclides and for the earth's revolution around the sun in Aristarchus. While these antecedents provided a handy defence for Copernicus, it is unlikely that they played any signifcant role in developing his theory (cf. Gingerich, Eye of Heaven, 1993). The Church in fact never officially condemned Copernicus's work as heretical, in part because its observations were essential to reform of the calendar and thus to the precise determination of Easter.

Another first edition of an important scientific publication to be offered is René Descartes’ Discours de la methode pour bien conduire sa raison, & chercher la verité dans les sciences. Plus La Dioptrique. Les meteores. Et la geometrie. Qui sont des essais de cete Methode (estimate: £30,000 – 40,000). This work is considered to be the foundation of all modern scientific and philosophic thought. Descartes was thought to be the first modern philosopher and one of the first modern scientists. Discours includes Descartes’ famous dictum, cogito, ergo sum, (I think, therefore I am) and the first discussion by a foreign scholar of Harvey's discovery of the circulation of blood.

Today's News

October 25, 2013

Sir Anthony Caro, whose abstract metal sculptures were shown around the world, has died

Two masterpieces from the Cleveland Museum of Art lead Christie's Evening Sale of Latin American Art

Romanian who admitted Dutch art heist to get reduced sentence because he acknowledged his guilt

Sotheby's brings Pablo Picasso and Joan Miro paintings to Moscow for 'priciest ever' show

Emir of Qatar's sister named biggest player in art world by Britain's ArtReview magazine

Christie's Valuable Manuscripts & Printed Books Sale will be led by a previously unrecorded Book of Hours

Duke and Duchess of Windsor's 1941 Cadillac to be auctioned in New York City

New lease amendment signed by Met and City of New York, confirming longstanding admissions policy

Metamatic reloaded: New art projects in dialogue with Tinguely's drawing machines

Merribell Parsons named Curator of European Art at the San Antonio Museum of Art

Unique Andy Warhol color screenprint on canvas featured in Swann Galleries' Auction of Contemporary Art

First solo exhibition in the UK for UBERMORGEN on view at Carroll / Fletcher

Nassau County Museum of Art offers first in-depth look at Peter Max's original drawings

Belgian artist David Claerbout presents 3 new videos at Yvon Lambert

Marge Monko, winner of the 2012 Henkel Art.Award, opens exhibition at mumok

Phillips Collection exhibition questions modern definition of portraiture

Warhol's Sandro Botticelli, Birth of Venus leads $2.1 million auction at Bonhams San Francisco

Exhibition of new paintings by the Spanish artist Antonio Murado opens at Von Lintel Gallery

Masterpieces heading home in Heritage's Texas Art Auction

Gardner Museum presents a project on absence and memory following the museum's 1990 art theft

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- The Morgan explores the Medieval world's fascinating approach to the passage of time

2.- Experts discover hidden ancient Maya structures in Guatemala

3.- Egyptian archaeologists unveil tomb of Old Kingdom priestess Hetpet

4.- The Speed Art Museum and Italian Ministry reach loan agreement on ancient calyx-krater

5.- Major exhibition features artistic masterpieces from the glorious Church of the Gesù

6.- From Beowulf to Chaucer, the British Library makes 1,000 years of rich literary history freely available online

7.- Truck damages Peru's ancient Nazca lines

8.- Trish Duebber is new Coordinator of Youth Programs at Boca Raton Museum Art School

9.- Exhibition examines the way art, like language, was used to articulate a rhetoric of exclusion

10.- The Dallas Museum of Art announces gift of three major European works

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful