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Book of Hours: MS 87

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Current Location: In storage


Book of Hours




PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, iii paper flyleaves + 113 fols. + iii paper flyleaves, 190 x 132 (107 x 80) mm, 19 long lines, ruled in pink ink.

BINDING: 19th century, gold-tooled red leather over pasteboard, identical with binding of Fitzwilliam Museum, MS 84.

CONTENTS: fols. 1v – 3v Ten Commandments, Creed, prayers in French (addition); fols. 4r – 9v Calendar; fols. 10r – 15v Hours of the Cross; fols. 16r – 19v Hours of the Holy Spirit; fols. 20r – 65v Hours of the Virgin; fols. 66r – 77v Penitential Psalms and Litany; fols. 78r – 107r Office of the Dead; fols. fols. 107r – 109r Eight Verses of St Bernard and prayers; fols. 109r – 113r Suffrages (fols. 112v – 113r additional suffrage to St Anne).

DECORATION: Twelve large miniatures [13 ll.] with arched gold frames and full acanthus and floral borders at major text divisions: fol. 10r Hours of the Cross, Agony in the Garden; fol. 16r Hours of the Holy Spirit, Pentecost; fol. 20r Hours of the Virgin, Matins, Annunciation; fol. 28r Lauds, Visitation; fol. 37r Prime, Adoration of the Child; fol. 41r Terce, Annunciation to the Shepherds; fol. 45r Sext, Adoration of the Magi; fol. 48r None, Presentation in the Temple, Simeon holding circumcision knife; fol. 51r Vespers, Flight into Egypt; fol. 57r Compline, Massacre of the Innocents; fol. 66r Penitential Psalms, Last Judgement, Christ holding olive branch and sword; fol. 78r Office of the Dead, Raising of Lazarus in graveyard with grave mark depicting Crucifixion with Virgin and St John.

Thirteen small framed miniatures [6 – 7 ll.] at lesser text divisions: fol. 11r Hours of the Cross, Prime, Christ before Pilate; fol. 11v Terce, Christ crowned with thorns; fol. 12v Sext, Crucifixion; fol. 13r None, Crucifixion, Longinus piercing Christ’ side with lance; fol. 13v Vespers, Deposition; fol. 14v Compline, Entombment; fol. 61r Obsecro te, Virgin and Child; fol. 65r Suffrages, St Barbara with open book and tower; fol. 109r St Nicholas with three boys in tub and three maidens; fol. 109v St Anthony with open book and pig; fol. 110r Martyrdom of St Sebastian; fol. 111r St Adrian with sword and anvil, lion at feet; fol. 111v St Catherine with book, sword, wheel, and Maxentius defeated.

ORNAMENTATION: Blue initials [4 ll.] with foliage infill on gold grounds beneath large miniatures at major text divisions; gold initials [1 – 2 ll.] on red and blue grounds; red and blue line-fillers with gold balls; alternate red and blue paragraph signs (fols. 1v – 3v); capitals highlighted in yellow or red (fols. 1v – 9v).


History note: Richard, seventh viscount Fitzwilliam of Merrion (1745 – 1816), acquired in 1814; his bequest, 1816.

Place(s) associated

  • Hainaut ⪼ Southern Netherlands ⪼ Netherlands

Acquisition and important dates

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


15th Century, third quarter#
Circa 1450 CE - Circa 1470 CE

People, subjects and objects depicted


  • Cambridge Illuminated

Materials used in production


Components of the work

Support composed of parchment
Textt Height 107 mm
Page Height 190 mm Width 132 mm
Text Width 80 mm

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: ecclesie tue
  • Location: Fol. 11r
  • Type: Secundo folio

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: MS 87
Primary reference Number: 169735
Project ID: 70
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 19 July 2023 Last processed: Thursday 7 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Book of Hours" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-04-13 01:13:36

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{{cite web|url= |title=Book of Hours |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-04-13 01:13:36|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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