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Fragments of a comb (peigne double); reused as part of the binding of a book (Front)

Fragments of a comb (peigne double); reused as part of the binding of a book (Front)
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Secular. Courtly love.

Repository Institution

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Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France (BnF), Cabinet des Manuscrits

NAF 10039


Height: 46mm (each)
Width: 148mm
Depth: 3-5mm

Upper panel: two knights kneeling before a seated queen (Frau Minne) holding their helms; helms decorated with a feather; attendants with horses; trees.
Lower panel: assault of a castle; knights in armour holding banners; crossbow; sword; ladders.

Delcourt 2009: Italy (Venice?), end of 14th century.


Polychromy - Gilding
Traces of polychromy.

Not viewed.

Object Condition
Missing: all teeth.

These pieces come from a single comb the centre part of which was sawn through its thickness. The two resulting pieces have been used to decorate the front cover of the binding of a 14th-century copy of the Roman d'Aspremont (work written c. 1189-1192, at the time of the Third Crusade). This binding was commissioned by Joseph Barrois (b. 1785, d. 1855), owner of the book at the time.

Collection of Joseph Barrois (b. 1785, d. 1855), politician, bibliophile and editor of ancient texts; collection of Bertram Ashburnham (b. 1840, d. 1913), 5th earl of Ashburnham: Ashburnham-Barrois sale, 10 June 1901, lot 2; bought at this sale for the Bibliothèque nationale by Léopold Delisle.

M.-P. Laffitte, 'Faux ou pastiches: quelques reliures 'à décor rétrospectif' de la collection Barrois', in Revue de la Bibliothèque nationale de France, 13 (2003), pp. 56-58 (p. 58, pl. VII.).
La Légende du roi Arthur, dir. by T. Delcourt, exhibition catalogue, Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, 2009, no. 67.


© Bibliothèque nationale de France.

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