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Model book

Maker(s) &

, production, Italy, Tuscany, Florence, probably Florence


illuminated manuscript


leaf (manuscript); sub-category
fragment (manuscript); sub-category
other; type of text


circa 1150 circa 1175


twelfth century, third quarter


PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, i paper flyleaf + 3 fols. (late medieval pagination 27-29 in brown ink) + i paper flyleaf, 230 x 145 mm, pricking in outer margins.

BINDING: 1980s, quarter brown morocco, marbled paper over wooden boards, by the Cockerell bindery.

CONTENTS: fols. 1r-3v Designs for twenty-two letters in the Latin alphabet

ORNAMENTATION: Ink drawings for initials filled with white vine-scroll and accompanied by designs for Evangelist symbols, animals, birds and foliate ornament: fol. 1r Designs for foliate ornament, the Zodiac sign of Pisces, and seven initials: two A initials with addorsed birds between them, B, C, two D initials, the second one extending into a bird, and Q formed of a dragon biting its tail; fol. 1v Designs for five initials: R, T, Y, X, U; fol. 2r Designs for six initials: M with a bird, O, L, N, and two S initials, the second one formed of a dragon; fol. 2v Designs for foliate ornament and five initials: C, E with a bird, N, Q extending into a dragon, and G with a dragon head and man climbing among vines; fol. 3r Designs for two roundels with the Evangelist symbols of St Matthew and St Luke, and five initials: F, P extending into a dragon’s head spewing foliage, H with two birds, I, and K.

Two illuminated initials with white vine-scroll on blue and buff ground, within thin red frames: fol. 3v Initials C and O.


illumination; whole


parchment; support
ink; medium
gold; medium




presented; 1972; Wormald, Francis, Mrs


Francis Wormald (1904-1972), acquired before May 1958; presented to the Museum by Mrs Wormald in 1972 in accordance with her late husband’s wishes.


Wormald, Francis, Mrs; previous owner



Wormald, F. and Giles, P. M.. 1982. A descriptive catalogue of the additional illuminated manuscripts in the Fitzwilliam Museum.Cambridge (Cambs.): p. 555-57

Alexander, J. J. G.. 1978. The Decorated Letter.London:
p. 24-25, pl. XXV

Gullick, M.. 1979. A Working Alphabet of Initial Letters from Twelfth Century Tuscany: A Facsimile of Cambridge, Fitzwilliam Museum, MS 83-1972.Hitchin:

Golob, N.. 1996. Twelfth-Century Cistercian Manuscripts: The Sitticum Collection.Ljubljana:
pp. 88-89, 210 n. 19

Miranda, M. A.. 1999. A illuminura em Portugal: Indentidade e Influências.Lisbon:
cat. no. VII

Holcomb, M.. 2009. Pen and Parchment: The Art of Drawing in the Middle Ages.New York:
cat. no. 33

Morgan, Nigel. Panayotova, Stella. Reynolds, Suzanne. 2011. A Catalogue of Western Book Illumination in the Fitzwilliam Museum and the Cambridge Colleges. Part Two. Vols. 1-2: Italy and the Iberian Peninsula.London: Harvey Miller Publishers
cat. no. 20

Alexander, J. J. G.. 1992. Matteo da Milano, Illuminator.
Source Title: Pantheon 50 (1992) : 32-45

pp. 94, 126, fig. 154

Middeldorf Kosegarten, A.. 2002-03. Die hässlichen Abtissen: Versuch über die frühen Grabmäler in Quedlinburg.
Source Title: Zeitschrift des Deutschen Vereins für Kunstwissenschaft 56-57 (2002-03) : 9-47

Middeldorf Kosegarten 2002-2003


Object Number: MS 83-1972
(Manuscripts and Printed Books)
(record id: 176496; input: 2010-04-14; modified: 2017-04-04)


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