The “Bible moralisée” of the Limbourg brothers.

The “Bible moralisée” of the Limbourg brothers.
Bibliothèque Nationale
French, Latin
PARIS, France
Shelf Mark:
Ms. Fr. 166
Alternate Names:
Biblia moralizada de los Limbourg -- Biblia sacra de los hermanos Limbourg
48 folios
Date Description:
1402-04 -- c. 1440-1460 -- c. 1492
Genesis through Joshua with commentary
Type of Decoration:
A number of artists worked on the manuscript throughout the fifteenth century under three different patrons: Phillip, Duke of Burgundy, René d'Anjou (probably), and Aymar de Poitier. Artists include the Limbourg brothers under Phillip (ff. 1r-33r(?) ); Angevins under René, including the Jouvenel Master (parts of the adjacent folios 33v-40r) and the Master of the Geneva Boccaccio (ff. 41r-47v); Georges Trubert under René (f. 48r, executed c. 1475-80); and artists employed by Aymar. -- Jerome Miniature: The first folio (unnumbered) contains a grisaille miniature of Jerome seated in his study, accompanied by a lion. The study is framed with elaborate Gothic architecture. -- Biblical and Interpretive Miniatures: Each folio is laid out in four columns and four rows; there are four miniatures each in the second and fourth columns. The miniatures in the first and third rows illustrate Old Testament narratives, those in the second and fourth row are "moralization" images, from the New Testament and contemporary life. Hexafoils frame the Old Testament images; architectural designs frame the moralizations. The hexafoils are consistently red and gold through f. 34r; afterward they are sometimes blue and gold. The architecture of the first phase of decoration is painted in tones of gray; later sections use a variety of colors. The scenes themselves are done in a full and vibrant color palette, though the garments of most of the figures in the Limbourg section are done in grisaille. -- Decorated Initials: Each text block begins with a pen flourished initial, either gold with black flourish or blue with red flourish. The page headers, which give the titles of the books of the Bible, are written in alternating flourished initials, as are the folio numbers in the upper right corner of the recto folios. There are also a few foliated initials in the manuscript; these are placed on gold backgrounds and foliate vines extend from them. Blue and gold line fillers are present in the text blocks.
Musical Notation:
Call Number:
Special Collections Rare Books Oversize ND 3355.5 .B52 B53 2010 Non-Circulating
Commentary Volume:
Nature of Facsimile:
Partial -- 415 x 285 mm -- Color -- Photographic with gold details -- Red leather binding with gold engraving
Publication Date:
Place of Publication:
Patrimonio Ediciones
Commentary entitled "The Bible Moralisée of the Limbourgs: From the Limbourg Brothers to Georges Trubert." By Eberhard König and John Lowden
Type of Text:
allegorical, Biblical, bilingual, commentary, devotional, illuminated Bible, Old Testament, religious, theological, typological, vernacular