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Book of hours: MS 51

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Object information

Current Location: In storage




PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, i paper flyleaf + 140 fols. + ii paper flyleaves, 176 x 120 (102 x 68) mm, 21 long lines, ruled in dark pink ink, leaf lost between fols. 82 – 83

BINDING: 19th century, brown leather quarter and marbled paper over pasteboards, TP monogram incised on fore-edge.

CONTENTS: fols. 1v – 2v Suffrages (addition); fols. 3r – 8v Calendar
fol. 9r Suffrage of St Ninian (addition); fols. 9v – 15r Fifteen Oes; fols. 15v – 34v Suffrages (with numerous additions); fols. 35v – 71r Hours of the Virgin, with memoriae at Lauds; fols. 71r – 74v Salve virgo virginum; fols. 75r – 78r O intemerata; fols. 78r – 79v Seven Joys of the Virgin; fols. 79v – 81r Prayers to the Five Wounds; fols. 81v – 82v Prayers before the Crucifix, Omnibus consideratis; fols. 83r – 85v Seven Last Words and other Christocentric devotions; fols. 86v – 97v Penitential Psalms and Litany; fols. 98v – 113v Office of the Dead; fols. 114v – 123v Commendation of the soul; fols. 124v – 128v Psalms of the Passion; fols. 129v – 139r Psalter of St Jerome; fol. 139r Suffrage of St Roch (addition); fols. 139v – 140r Medical recipes, Pro morbo caduco (addition) .

DECORATION: Twenty-four full-page framed miniatures with full acanthus, floral, and spraywork borders for major text divisions: fol. 9v Fifteen Oes, Christ standing, blessing with open book, and flanked by angels; fol. 15v Suffrages, Throne of Mercy; fol. 17v St John the Baptist; fol. 19v Martyrdom of St Thomas of Canterbury; fol. 21v St George; fol. 23v St Christopher; fol. 25v St Anne with open book, Virgin and Child, and angel; fol. 27v St Catherine; fol. 29v St Mary Magdalene; fol. 31v St Barbara; fol. 33v St Margaret, Christ above; fol. 35v Hours of the Virgin, Matins Agony in the Garden; fol. 41v Lauds, Betrayal; fol. 52v Prime, Christ before Pilate; fol. 56v Terce, Flagellation; fol. 59v Sext, Road to Calvary; fol. 62v None, Crucifixion, with Virgin, John, Jewish elders, and believing centurion; fol. 65v Vespers, Deposition; fol. 67v Compline, Entombment, with Three Women and John; fol. 86v Penitential Psalms, Last Judgement, with Virgin and St John the Evangelist interceding; fol. 98v Office of the Dead, Funeral service; fol. 114v Commendation of the soul, Souls borne by angels to Christ in heaven; fol. 124v Psalms of the Passion, Christ as Man of Sorrows with Instruments of the Passion; fol. 130v Psalter of St Jerome St Jerome writing.

Half-page miniature in wide decorative frame (addition): fol. 1v Suffrage, St Anthony.

Twenty historiated initials in white-patterned pink and blue on gold grounds for lesser text divisions: fol. 47r memoriae after Lauds, [V, 5 ll.] Holy Spirit; fol. 47v [M, 6 ll.] St Michael; fol. 48r [P, 7 ll.] Saints Peter and Paul; fol. 48v [A, 6 ll.] St Andrew, [L, 6 ll.] St Lawrence; fol. 49r [S, 6 ll.] St Stephen; fol. 50r [B, 6 ll.] St Nicholas; fol. 50v [O, 6 ll.] All Saints; fol. 71r Salve virgo virginum, [S, 6 ll.] Annunciation; fol. 75r O intemerata, [O, 5 ll.] Virgin and Child; fol. 78r Seven Joys of the Virgin, [V, 5 ll.] Presentation of the Virgin to the Temple; fol. 80r Prayers on the Five Wounds, [A, 4 ll.] wounded right hand, [V, 5 ll.] wounded left hand; fol. 80v [O, 4 ll.] schematic Five Wounds, [S, 4 ll.] wounded right foot, [L, 3 ll.] wounded left foot; fol. 81v Prayers before the Crucifix, [O, 6 ll.] Crucifixion with Mary and John, [T, 4 ll.] empty cross, [A, 4 ll.] Vernicle; fol. 82r [I, 6 ll.] St John the Evangelist.

ORNAMENTATION: Pink or blue white-patterned initials [6 ll.] with foliage infill on gold grounds and full acanthus, floral, and spraywork borders facing and matching those for the full-page miniatures at major text divisions; gold initials [2 ll.] on pink and blue white-patterned grounds; gold initials [2 ll.] with brown pen-flourishing (fol. 1v); alternate gold and blue one-line initials with black or red pen-flourishing; gold, red and blue abstract line fillers.


History note: 15th century addition of suffrages to Saints Ninian, Hugh, Cuthbert and Armel suggests northern English or Scottish ownership; 16th century inscription: ‘Edward Smith is a knave and a base rogue’ (fol. 27r); purchased for the Museum from Quaritch in 1890 (catalogue cutting and inscription inside upper cover).

Place(s) associated

  • Bruges ⪼ Flanders

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bought (1890) by Quaritch


15th Century#
Circa 1460 CE - Circa 1480 CE

People, subjects and objects depicted


  • Cambridge Illuminated

Materials used in production


Components of the work

Support composed of parchment
Text Height 102 mm Width 68 mm
Page Height 176 mm Width 120 mm

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: amarissimi doloris
  • Location: Fol. 11r
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS 51
Primary reference Number: 169711
Project ID: 60
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 24 April 2023 Last processed: Thursday 7 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Book of hours" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-06-17 05:13:43

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