Illuminated manuscripts

In medieval times the illumination of hand-written books reached its peak. Artists used egg tempera to decorate initials and to paint illustrations. Only the wealthiest could afford such books.

Well-known for their book illustrations are the Van Limburg brothers and the Master of the Munich Golden Legend.

Bible historiale / illuminated bibles


Books of hours

A book of hours is a handwritten book used by laymen in the Middle Ages to look up which prayer to say at what time.

The first were created in the 13th century. In some cases artists were hired to illuminate them. The illustrations were used to provide structure to the book, to teach the reader but also to beautify the book.

Related topics: Bedford Book of Hours | Book of Hours of Étienne Chevalier | Book of Kells | Dutch History Bible | Les Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry | Les belles heures du duc de Berry

Related works of art: