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The illuminations of the Second Vrbnik Missal

Authors
Publisher
Old Church Slavonic Institute
Publication Date
Keywords
  • Drugi Vrbnički Misal
  • Glagoljski Rukopis
  • Iluminacije
  • Ivan Vii. Frankapan
  • Maestro Di Pico
  • 15. Stoljeće
  • Second Vrbnik Missal
  • Glagolitic Manuscript
  • Illuminations
  • Ivan Vii Frankopan
  • Pico Master
  • 15Th Century

Abstract

The Second Vrbnik Missal is a Glagolitic liturgical codex significant for art history due to its decorative border and twenty-one miniatures in the Renaissance style. Within the corpus of the Glagolitic manuscripts from the 14th and 15th centuries, miniatures show deviations on many levels; they introduce newness in terms of style and iconography. One of the iconographic themes unknown in the Glagolitic manuscripts is a miniature of the Annunciation separated in medallions contained inside the decorative border. An earlier attribution of the decorative border (f. 2r) to the Venetian illuminator Pico Master (fl . 1460-1505) is extended to all figurative miniatures. The attribution of miniatures to a foreign illuminator opens a number of questions related to the circumstances of their creation: the question of provenance, dating and the very existance and identification of a client. According to the activity of the Pico Master recorded in Venice during his entire career, it is evident that the miniatures in the Glagolitic Missal are created in that city as well. The dating of the miniatures within the illuminator’s oeuvre, differ from the accepted dating of the manuscript for twenty years. Judging by the comparative material, the miniatures fit into the master’s oeuvre around year 1480. The later dating of the miniatures together with the recently proposed dating of the writing of the manuscript twenty to thirty years later (based on the paleographic analysis) suggests a need for the revision of the datation entire manuscript. The existence of the client as an individual is a logical conclusion on the basis of the Pico Master’s clientele, as well as the inconsistence with quality of miniatures in most of today known Glagolitic manuscripts. Based on the historical circumstances and known data, count Ivan VII Frankapan (1424-1486) stands out as the most probable client.

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