The Gift of the Word
Early 16th-Century Book of Hours
This is a beautifully hand-written, hand-painted leaf from a book of hours originating from northern Italy. This devotional prayer book was most likely kept with its owner due to its value and to belief in its protective powers. The illumination, with vibrantly rich colors and gold lettering, demonstrates the elegance of the page and the value of the book.
The theme of this page is the hope of salvation and praise of the Resurrection of Christ. Inside the decorative initial "O" is Christ's cross situated on a pink mound with Jesus' blood-stained Crown of Thorns, worn at his Crucifixion. Extending from the decorated initial "O" is a partial foliate border with a peacock, a Christian symbol of the Resurrection, resting gloriously at the top.