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Isabelle d'Este's Book of Hours

Published on , by Agathe Albi-Gervy

This richly illuminated Book of Hours, commissioned at the very end of the 15th century by the great Isabelle d'Este (1474-1539) herself, was knocked down to a lucky buyer this summer by the London auction house Dreweatts for £421,600. A highly honourable score for an antique manuscript which might well not have topped...

The Hours of Isabella d’Este, Rite of Rome, in Latin, c. 1490. opulently illuminated... Isabelle d'Este's Book of Hours
The Hours of Isabella d’Este, Rite of Rome, in Latin, c. 1490. opulently illuminated manuscript on parchment, Italy, Florence, 240 leaves, text complete, missing one leaf before fol. 233.
Result: €421,600

This richly illuminated Book of Hours, commissioned at the very end of the 15th century by the great Isabelle d'Este (1474-1539) herself, was knocked down to a lucky buyer this summer by the London auction house Dreweatts for £421,600. A highly honourable score for an antique manuscript which might well not have topped its estimate of £200,000/300,000, as collectors were probably disconcerted by its list of provenances. These included resonant names like Lorenzo the Magnificent and Cardinal Richelieu, but only as unconfirmed possibilities. 

10 July, Dreweatts, London.
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