E0028 Leaf from a Book of Hours (Horæ Beatæ Mariæ Virginis)

ACC Ege28 recto.jpg
ACC Ege28 verso.jpg


E0028 Leaf from a Book of Hours (Horæ Beatæ Mariæ Virginis)


Book of Hours


Northern France; Middle 15th Century. Latin Text; Angular Gothic Script.

This Book of Hours shows definite characteristics of the manuscript art of France and the Netherlands of about 1450 A.D. It was probably one of many copies prepared for sale at a shrine to which devout pilgrims came to worship or to seek a cure. The spiked letters and the detatched ornamental bar are unmistakably Flemish in spirit, while the free ivy sprays are distinctively French. The burnished metal in the decorations shows the use of alloyed gold (oro di metà) as well as silver.

Various metals were added in different localities to the fine gold. English illuminations frequently had a decided orange hue, while the French had a lemon cast. The quality of the gold was best enhanced by the use of burnishing tools equipped with an emerald, a topaz, or a ruby. Less successful burnishers contained an agate or the tooth of a wolf, a horse, or a dog.

The metal alloys have tarnished, and there is visible chemical deterioration of the vellum. Some of the leaves display smudging of the ink when still wet.

Text: The leaves we have seen indicate that this Book of Hours accords with the Use of Metz; see especially Leaf 28 in the Kent State, Denison, Kenyon, and Lima portfolios for evidence. This leaf contains text from the Hours of the Virgin at Vespers, including the entire text of the hymn "O quam glorifica luce."


Fifty Original Leaves from Medieval Manuscripts


Middle 15th century


Item in public domain. Description provided by Dr. Fred Porcheddu-Engel via the Otto F. Ege digital collection. http://ege.denison.edu/denison_leaf_28.php


300 dpi JPEG; 15 x 10.5 cm




Medieval manuscript leaf


Denison University Leaf 28, Fifty Original Leaves from Medieval Manuscripts


Recto Translation: [Responses not yet translated.] Hymn.

O how glorious art thou, dazzling with light,
stock of David, royal offspring!
Thou dwellest in a sublime height, O Virgin Mary,
Looking down on all the heavenly regions.

Thou, with the honor of being a virgin and mother,
hast prepared for the Lord of Angels thy bosom
as a sacred palace, thy most holy womb,
from whence God took flesh, and was born Christ.

Verso Translation: Thou, whom the whole world venerates and pays homage,
before whom all now rightfully bend the knee,
To whom we humbly beseech in our misery and darkness,
coming before thee surrounded by the joy of pure light.

O Father of all lights, through this sacred Flame
give unto us thy only Begotten Son,
who with Thee reigns brilliantly in the heavens,
ruling and governing for all ages. Amen.

Verse. Thou didst remain an inviolate virgin after thy childbearing. R. O mother of God pray for us. Ant. Holy Mary. Psalm.

My soul doth magnify the Lord.


Recto Transcription: R. Christi virgo dilectissima virtutum operatrix opem fer miseris subveni domina clamantibus ad te iugiter. V. Quoniam peccatorum mole premimur et non est qui adiuvet. Subveni domina. Gloria patri. Subveni. Hymnus.

O quam glorifica luce coruscas,
Stirpis Davidicae regia proles!
Sublimis residens, Virgo Maria,
Supra caeligenas aetheris omnes.

Tu cum virgineo mater honore,
Anglorum Domino pectoris aulam
Sacris visceribus casta parasti;
Natus hinc Deus est corpore Christus.

Verso Transcription: Quem cunctus venerans orbis adorat,
cui nunc rite genuflectitur omne;
A quo te, petimus, subveniente,
Abjectis tenebris, gaudia lucis.

Hoc largire Pater luminis omnis,
Natum per proprium, Flamine sacro,
Qui tecum nitida vivit in aethra
Regnans, ac moderans saecula cuncta. Amen.

Verset. Post partum virgo in violata permansisti. R. Dei genitrix intercede pro nobis. Ant. Sancta Maria. Ps.

Magnificat anima mea dominum



“E0028 Leaf from a Book of Hours (Horæ Beatæ Mariæ Virginis),” Digital Exhibits | Denison University Archives & Special Collections, accessed May 21, 2024, https://exhibits.denisonarchives.org/items/show/50.