Monastery of San Ludovico, Revere (Lombardy), 11 May 1490.
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Letters patent by Giovanni de Sigestro, Vicar General of the minorite friars in the cismontane province, granting lay membership of the order to the Venetian patrician Domenico Tarvisio, his wife Caterina, and their sons and daughters; document on vellum, 17 lines written in a very fine humanist script, dark brown ink, ruled in plummet, five-line illuminated initial ‘M’ in shades of purple, green and blue against a burnished gold ground and with illuminated floral extensions in left-hand and upper margins, signed at foot by Giovanni de Sigestro and with seal of the cismontane minorite friars in red wax attached to the document on two blue, white and yellow cords tipped with metal; creases where folded, a few small stains, small area of loss at foot of seal, but generally in excellent, fresh condition. 235 x 365mm
A beautifully written and illuminated Italian Renaissance charter.
The document addresses Domenico Tarvisio and his family as ‘most devout benefactors of our seraphic prior Francesco’. In recognition of their generosity, the Vicar General of the order, Giovanni de Sigestro, grants them lay membership, full participation in all the sacraments, and the full benefits of all spiritual practices of the order, including masses, fasts, abstinences, pilgrimages, meditations, preaching, confessions and so forth. As a further honour, an obituary announcement will be made for them in the chapter of the order.
The document is signed at the foot by Giovanni de Sigestro (1440–1510).
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in Latin, Deuteronomy 11,24–12,30 and 13,1–14,29; an almost complete leaf written in a good rounded romanesque hand with a strong ‘st’ ligature and both tall and uncial-type ‘d’, double columns of 54 lines, ruled with a hard point, three three-line initials and one two-line initial in red; recovered from use as a binding and with consequent wear and staining, a few small holes, trimmed at head with loss of perhaps two lines, verso worn in places, but generally in very good condition and almost entirely legible. 538 x 367 mm
A very large folio leaf from an Italian giant or ‘Atlantic’ Bible. This genre of romanesque Bible originated in Rome in the mid-eleventh century; the production and diffusion were no doubt due in part to the clerical reforms under Popes Leo IX and Gregory VII. In the early twelfth century manuscript production seems to have shifted somewhat from Rome and southern Umbria to Tuscany, whence the present leaf may originate.
EARLY PROTESTANT PRAYER-BOOK BRUNFELS, Otto.
Precationes Biblicae sanctoru[m] patrum, illustrium viroru[m] et mulierum utriusq[ue] Testamenti.
First edition, rare. The earliest Protestant prayer-books, of which this is perhaps the most notable example, often comprised prayers taken directly from (or adapted from) the Bible. Brunfels’s Precationes Biblicae appeared in the same year in German translation (Biblisch Bettbüchlein der Altvätter und herrlichen Weibern, beyd Alts und Newes Testaments) and was translated into several other languages including English (Prayers of the Byble, published by Robert Redman in 1535).