Missal

Object Details

Title:

Missal

Artist/Maker(s):

Master of the Brussels Initials (Italian, active about 1389 - 1410)

Culture:

Italian

Place(s):

Bologna, Emilia-Romagna, Italy (Place created)

Date:

between 1389 and 1404

Medium:

Tempera colors, gold leaf, gold paint, and ink on parchment bound between wood boards covered with blind-stamped sheepskin

Dimensions:

Leaf: 33 x 24 cm (13 x 9 7/16 in.)

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Cosimo de' Migliorati, bishop of Bologna and a cardinal, commissioned this luxuriously decorated missal. It was made sometime between 1389 and 1404, the year in which he was elevated to the papacy as Innocent VII. A missal contains all the texts used for celebrating Mass, including all the chants sung by the choir but without musical notation. Only the musically elaborate portions sung by the celebrating priest are supplied with notation, suggesting that this book was designed to be used by the cardinal himself at the altar as he celebrated Mass. The elegant illuminations of the missal, consisting of decorated calendar pages, numerous historiated initials, ornamented borders, and miniatures, place the book within the tradition of Bolognese manuscript illumination. The manuscript's anonymous illuminator, known as the Master of the Brussels Initials, was trained in Bologna, a city whose book trade flourished due to the prestige and growth of the university. The Master's work is characterized by the use of vivid colors, heavily modeled figures, and borders teeming with drolleries, beasts, and acanthus leaves.

Related Works
Exhibitions
The International Gothic Style (January 17 to April 1, 1989) (fols. 171av - 172a)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), January 17 to April 1, 1989
Recent Acquisitions of Illuminated Manuscripts, 1984-1989 (July 17 to September 30, 1989) (fols. 171av - 172a)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), July 17 to September 30, 1989
Manuscripts and Americans: An Exhibition in Honor of Franklin D. Murphy (July 21 to October 18, 1992) (fols. 171av - 172a)
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The Psalms and Their Illustration (April 27 to July 3, 1993) (fols. 6v - 7)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), April 27 to July 3, 1993
The International Style: Courtly Art Around the Year 1400 (October 24, 1994 to January 8, 1995) (fols. 129v - 130)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), October 25, 1994 to January 8, 1995
Illuminated Choir Books of the Middle Ages and Renaissance 1995 (April 25 to July 9, 1995) (fols. 171av - 172a)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), April 25 to July 9, 1995
Masterpieces of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscript illumination (December 16, 1997 to March 22, 1998) (fols. 171av - 172a)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), December 16, 1997 to March 22, 1998
Out-of-Bounds: Marginal Imagery in Illuminated Manuscripts (April 7, 1998 to July 5, 1998) (fols. 6v - 7)
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  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), May 9 to July 30, 2000
The Queen of the Angels (August 15 to November 5, 2000) (fols. 6v - 7)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), August 15 to November 5, 2000
Ritual Splendor: Illuminated Liturgical Manuscripts (February 20 to May 6, 2001) (fols. 129v - 130)
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Songs of Praise: Illuminated Choir Books (July 23 to October 13, 2002) (fols. 135v - 136)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), July 23 to October 13, 2002
Treasures of a Lost Art: Italian Manuscript Painting of the Middle Ages and Renaissance (June 7 to August 31, 2003) (not in catalogue; fols. 129v - 130)
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Masterpieces in Miniature: Italian Manuscripts from the Middle Ages and Renaissance (March 29 to June 12, 2005) (fols. 6v - 7)
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Masterpieces in Miniature: Italian Manuscript Illumination from the J. Paul Getty Museum (September 25, 2005 to January 2, 2006) (fols. 171av - 172a)
  • National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.), September 25, 2005 to January 2, 2006
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Out of Bounds: Images in the Margins of Illuminated Manuscripts (September 1 to November 8, 2009) (fol. 6v - 7)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), September 1 to November 8, 2009
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