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Master of the Ingeborg Psalter,
French, probably Noyon, after 1205
Tempera colors, gold leaf, and ink on parchment bound between pasteboard covered with brown calf
Leaf: 12 3/16 x 8 5/8 in.
MS. 66

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In northeastern France, probably in the area around Noyon, an anonymous artist known as the Master of the Ingeborg Psalter illuminated this psalter shortly after 1205. Almost certainly made for a wealthy layperson for use in private prayer, the book contains the 150 psalms and other poetic texts from the Bible, preceded by a calendar indicating the particular saints and events to be remembered on each day of the year.

The book's program of illumination originally consisted of large painted initials at Psalms 1, 26, 38, 51, 52, 68, 80, 97, 101, and 109, dividing the text of the psalms into ten sections. Regrettably, the initial for Psalm 1 was removed from the manuscript long ago and is now lost. The remaining nine initials constitute a stunning display of the achievements of the psalter's illuminator. Many of the initials feature King David, who is often shown acting out the psalm's opening verse.

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