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King Modus & Queen Ratio

660 Years Old Textbook of Hunting Knowledge

(Ferrières, Henri de.) Le Livre du Roy Modus / The Book of the Hunt of King Modus. Fol. 1-105 of Ms. 10218-19 of the Bibliothèque Royale Albert Ier, Brussels. Manuscript in red & black on vellum. Brugge 1st half till mid of 15th century. 11¾ × 8⅛ in (299 × 205 mm). 2, 105 ll. With

56  miniatures

(most 3⅜ × 5¼ in [8.5 × 13.5 cm]) by the master of the Girart de Roussillon and initials decorated throughout, all most richly in gold and many colors. Facsimile edition in the original size and the original colors. Facsimile & commentary volume (by Dagmar Thoss together with German translation from the oldest illuminated manuscript of 1379 Fr. 12399 of the Biblioth. Nat., Paris, by Max Haehn, 119 pp., 5 ills.). 1989. Gilt orig. light brown leather with 6 ornamental raised bands, filet and acanthus wave rank on both boards and rich design of the back with pomegranates enclosed by acanthus leaves and stylized tulip together with title-stamping on red ground and colored marbled fly-leaves together with library mark of the Bibliothèque Royale, except for the leather marbling and the gilt edges all corresponding to the orig. binding of the 18th century, however, here faithfully untrimmed only as usual for manuscripts, & orig. cloth in orig. cloth slipcase with back-plate.

Henri de Ferrières, Book of the Hunt of King Modus

Not in Schlieker, Die Verehrung des hl. Hubertus im Wandel der Jahrhunderte, 2016.

CODICES SELECTI XCI. – No. 236/975 numbered copies of the German-language set beside 1650 for the French and 375 for the Spanish market as well as 40 unnumbered author’s copies each as limited world edition. – The latest of in total nine illuminated manuscripts created for Philip the Good, duke of Burgundy (1396-1467), of the

oldest  French  book  on  the  hunt ,

written as textbook by a connoisseur of degree, who had still hunted with Charles IV (d. 1328) and “thus only of high age, as several of his contemporaries and compeers, had exchanged the sword with the pen”. And whose own family hunts received artistic consecration still 600 years later as Les Chasses de Ferrières. While exactly 600 years later the Château de Ferrières, then already “splendid estate” of the Rothschilds, became witness of Franco-German past. From Sep. 19 to Oct. 6, 1870, it served as headquarter for the King of Prussia and “here Sep. 19 and 20, 1870, fruitless peace talks between count Bismarck and Jules Favre took place” (Meyers Konversations-Lexikon, 4th ed., VI [1889], 163/II).

Divided into two main sections “Modus” explains beside the practice of the

hunt  with  hounds  and  the  falconry

also respectively possible trap and catch devices as well as archery. Special importance was attached to the illustration of stalking, catching & killing. The representations of the

catch  devices  meant  for  reproduction .

The facsimilation ends with the textbook on whose last page – common to all manuscripts – the author’s Songe de pestilence follows (Ms. 10,219). It served as model to Gaston de Phébus’ later textbook which, however, became much more famous (its facsimile edition and was printed for the first time in 1486.

Stylistically the miniatures are to be assigned to the Master of the Girart de Roussillon (= Master of the Chronicle of Jerusalem) and stand out by open, painterly brush-work, richly shaded coloring as well as spacious landscape design including illusionary effects. Of high quality the pendant depictions of red deer & wild boar as symbols of the light and the darkness, represented in the antler-charmingly arranged picture of the

Hubert  stag & the  Tree  of  Evil  visited  by  the  boar .

Of the Girart master several manuscripts worked for Philipp are known.

“ (His) workshop was of great importance for Flemish book painting in the mid of the 15th century; in it the most precious illuminated manuscripts of these years were created. ”

And thus quite fitting into the setting of Philip’s collections who was

“ an enthusiastic supporter of art and science and owner of one of the most important collections of manuscripts in his time into which he wanted to include only

extraordinarily  beautiful  works

… it was considered as ‘the best-equipped of Christianity’ with which that of the French king could not rival anymore ”

(Stange & Jerchel in Löffler-Kirchner, Lexikon des gesamten Buchwesens, III [1937], 11).

For  you  now , however , the  opportunity  to  acquire  one  of  its  show-pieces  as

sumptuously  beautiful  facsimile

for your own library , joining history of the hunt & optics. – As good as new.

Offer no. 15,855 / EUR  980. / export price EUR  931. (c. US$ 1125.) + shipping

– – The same. – No. 386/975 copies as above. – Particularly frontcover & spine of the slipcase dirt-stained, otherwise almost as new.

Offer no. 15,861 / EUR  790. / export price EUR  751. (c. US$ 908.) + shipping