Medieval Book of Hours Leaf with Psalm 62


A vellum page from a Medieval book of hours, featuring a single column of text comprised of 14 lines. The script used is a particularly fine example of the popular Medieval and Renaissance gothic book-hand script, used extensively for French vernacular books, known as lettre bâtarde. The text is executed in black ink and ruled in fine red pigment. Specific characters have been enlarged and emphasised, decorated with blue, red, white and liquid gold. Further decorative elements have been added to the sides, composed of foliate, acanthus leaves and the depiction of a roaring dragon on one side.

Date: Circa late 14th century
Condition: Excellent


The book of hours was a devotional text, which gained popularity in the Middle Ages, containing psalms and prayers to be read at specific times of the day.

The script of this particular page details the majority of psalm 62. The recto text reads as follows, beginning with the ending of verse 3 to 6:

62.3 – [….]ut viderem virtutem tuam, et gloriam tuam. (…in order to behold your virtue and your glory.)

62.4 – Quoniam melior est misericordia tua super vitas: labia mea laudabunt te.
(For your mercy is better than life itself. It is you my lips will praise.)

62.5 – Sic benedicam te in vita mea: et in nomine tuo levabo manus meas.
(So will I bless you in my life, and I will lift up my hands in your name.)

62.6 – Sicut adipe et pinguedine repleatur anima mea: et labiis exultationis lauda[…] (Let my soul be filled, as if with marrow and fatness; and my mouth will give praise with exultant lips.)

The Verso text, decorated with a roaring dragon, continues with the end of verse 62.6, until 62.10:

62:6 […]bit os meum.

62.7 – Si memor fui tui super stratum meum, in matutinis meditabor in te:
(When I have remembered you on my bed in the morning, I will meditate on you.)

62.8 – quia fuisti adiutor meus. Et in velamento alarum tuarum exultabo,
(For you have been my helper. And I will exult under the cover of your wings.)

62.9 – adhæsit anima mea post te: me suscepit dextera tua.
(My soul has clung close to you. Your right hand has supported me.)

62.10 – Ipsi vero in vanum quæsierunt animam meam, introibunt in[…]
(Truly, these ones have sought my soul in vain. They will enter into the lower parts of the earth.)

Weight 3.1 g
Dimensions W 12.8 x H 18.4 cm