France or Germany, second half of 12th century.
US $2201 €1989
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with readings and music for the 18th, 19th and 20th Sundays after Pentecost; a partial bifolium and a single leaf (text of first leaf of bifolium and single leaf continuous), vellum, double columns of 28 lines written in two sizes of an angular late romanesque liturgical script, dark brown ink, ruled with a hard point, initials in blue, green and red, rubrics in red, neumes on a single stave traced in red; recovered from a binding and with consequent creasing and staining, outer column of second leaf of bifolium cropped, a few small holes, one initial (‘D’) filled with a Renaissance doodle of strapwork and a putto’s head, generally in good condition and almost entirely legible. The first leaf measures 290 x 227 mm (260 x 175 mm)
The fine angular script and elegantly simple initials are typical of Cistercian manuscripts, although the absence of punctus flexus punctuation precludes a more definitive Cistercian attribution.
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Iacobi Blanchoni ucessiensis adversus Ludovicum beneventanum abbatem selestensem defensionum liber.
First edition of a very rare work of sixteenth-century Lyonnese Neoplatonism, an elegantly-printed de Tournes edition. Ostensibly a simple series of remarks against the theses of the (presumably sternly Scholastic) abbot of Selestan, this is a tract of Renaissance moral philosophy. The theme of dignitas hominis concentrated the philosophical efforts of several Lyonnese men of letters inspired by Ficino and Pico della Mirandola. Like Charles de Bovelles and P. Boaistuau, Jacques Blanchon systematically harmonizes Aristotle’s philosophy and science with the hermetic thought associated with the writings of Hermes Trismegistus.
in French and Latin, with readings from the Gospel of John, the Book of Wisdom, and Ephesians; a partial bifolium (leaves not consecutive), double columns of 30 lines written in a good formal gothic bookhand in brown ink, ruled lightly with ink, five two-line initials delicately painted in pink or blue against burnished gold grounds and with ivyleaf extensions, ten one-line initials in burnished gold against pink and blue grounds, capitals touched in yellow, Latin passages underlined in red, original numbering in red at head of each leaf ‘xii. xix.’ and ‘xiii. iiii.’, rubrics; trimmed at foot, without loss of text, and at fore-margins, occasionally affecting a letter or two, but in excellent condition. 202 x 141 mm (172 x 120 mm)
The use of French indicates that the parent manuscript was intended for a lay reader or audience, while the quality of the script and illumination points to a prestigious commission. The passages in French are each preceded by the first few words of the original Latin text, underlined in red.