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Hours: MS 153

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Object information

Current Location: In storage




Scribe: Simone, Alessandro di Antonio
Artist: Majorana, Cristoforo




PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, iii parchment flyleaves (the third one foliated 1) + 324 fols. (foliated 2-325), 176 x 123 mm (83 x 53 mm), 12 long lines, ruled in pale ink

BINDING: fifteenth century, sewn on four supports, brown leather over wooden boards, blind-stamped with an interlacing rope-work pattern, traces of two fastening devices on fore-edge, edges gilt.

fols. 2r–13v Calendar
fols. 15r–126v Hours of the Virgin
fols. 128r–142v Short Hours of the Cross
fols. 144r–175r Penitential Psalms and Litany
fols. 176r–251r Office of the Dead
fols. 252r–259r Hours of the Holy Spirit
fols. 260r–270r Prayer attributed to St Augustine, Dulcissime domine Iesu, with rubric in Italian on fol. 270r-v
fols. 272r–279r Obsecro te
fols. 280r–309r Psalter of St Jerome
fols. 310r–313v Psalm 90, followed by a prayer to Archangel Raphael, Deus qui beatum Raphaelem archangelum Thobie famulo tuo
fol. 314r Scribal colophon (Colophons I, 405)

DECORATION: Four full-page architectural frontispieces on grounds of shredded colour, the text-page suspended from the frame by strings held by putti and housing large miniatures and 2-5 lines of text written in gold, with garlands and classicising motifs: fol.15r Hours of the Virgin, Matins, Coronation of the Virgin; fol. 128r Short Hours of the Cross, Matins, Betrayal; fol. 144r Penitential Psalms, David penitent in the desert; fol. 176r Office of the Dead, Vespers, The Three Living and the Three Dead, with hermit in cave.

Twenty-two large miniatures in similar, but less elaborate classicising frames on grounds of shredded colour: fol. 33r Hours of the Virgin, Lauds, Annunciation; fol. 65r Prime, Adoration of the Child; fol. 73r Terce, Adoration of the Magi; fol. 81r Sext, Resurrection; fol. 87r None, Ascension; fol. 95r Vespers, Pentecost; fol. 107r Compline, Assumption of the Virgin; fol. 130r Short Hours of the Cross, Prime, Christ before Pilate; fol. 132r Terce, Carrying of the Cross; fol. 134r Sext, Nailing to the Cross; fol. 136r None, Crucifixion with the Virgin and St John; fol. 138r Vespers, Deposition, with three Marys and St John; fol. 140r Compline, Entombment; fol. 188r Office of the Dead, Matins, first nocturne, Death on skeleton-horse holding scythe and riding over corpses; fol. 202v Office of the Dead, Matins, second nocturne, Seven souls bearing stones and climbing mountain to golden city; fol. 214r Office of the Dead, Matins, third nocturne, Six souls burning in pits, three angels consoling them; fol. 232r Office of the Dead, Lauds, Five souls flying up into starry firmament, three angels kneeling on ground among flaming pits; fol. 252r Hours of the Holy Spirit, Pentecost, with Christ descending and breathing out a silver dove; fol. 260r Prayer, St Augustine as bishop holding book; fol. 272r Obsecro te, Virgin and Child enthroned, the Virgin holding golden apple and being crowned by angel; fol. 280r Psalter of St Jerome, Penitent St Jerome before bleeding Crucifix, lion beside him; fol. 310r Psalm 90 and prayer to Archangel Raphael, Archangel Raphael leading Tobias who is holding fish, dog behind.

ORNAMENTATION: Gold initials [1-7 ll.] on blue grounds with white vine-scroll interlace, sometimes accompanied by one-sided foliate or fruit border headed by dragon or grotesque; alternate gold and blue one-line initials with purple and red pen flourishing.


History note: Completed for Lorenzo di Matteo Strozzi (d. 1479), his arms (fols. 15r, defaced, and 144r) and name, Laurentio Strotio de Florentia (fols. 261r, 266r, 275v, 308v), on 7 Sept. 1478 (colophon, fol. 314r); Richard, seventh Viscount Fitzwilliam of Merrion (1745–1816), acquired in 1811; his bequest, 1816.

Place(s) associated

  • Naples

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1816) by Fitzwilliam, Richard, 7th Viscount

People, subjects and objects depicted


  • Cambridge Illuminated

Materials used in production


Components of the work

Support composed of parchment

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: [septua]gesime. Sed a septuagesima
  • Location: Fol. 16r
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS 153
Primary reference Number: 118739
Project ID: 384
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 5 February 2024 Last processed: Monday 5 February 2024

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Manuscripts and Printed Books

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