Leaf from a Book of Hours of Sir John Fastolf




c. 1440

This date is suggested because if Sir John Fastolf is the original owner, he would have had the book made after he retired from military service around 1440. The Fastolf Master, being the supposed creator of this book, was also active during this time, supporting the inference that this manuscript was created around 1440.


179 x 139 mm (100 x 68 mm)

No visible signs of cropping.


ff. 1r:

ff. 1r appears to be uniform until ff. 1r lines 7-9, where the text becomes lighter and smaller than the previous lines or those following. The text resumes its appearance from ff. 1r lines 1-6 in lines 10-16.

ff. 1v:

ff. 1r lines 1-8 are slightly than ff. 1r lines 9-16, for lines 1-8 are written in lighter ink and have more space between letters than lines 9-16. There is also a difference in letters such as "a" in that in lines 1-8, the head of the "a" remains detached from the rest of the letter, whereas in lines 9-16, the head of the "a" attaches to the curve (there seems to be less biting of bows). However, the bows of letters such as "d" and "o" bite in the upper half.

ff. 1r and ff. 1v:

The leaf as a whole appears to be written in Gothic Textualis Quadrata due to the consistently applied feet to the minims (as demonstrated in Plate 29 of Michelle Brown's A Guide to Western Historical Scripts from Antiquity to 1600). The text as a whole is of high grade and very good quality. There is a regularity and rhythm to the script as well as a pronounced biting of bows. The script follows the model of Gothic Textualis by demonstrating a very compressed and vertical script with angular letters. Gothic hands such as this moreover demonstrate the return to the Uncial "d" as well as use of the short "s" if it is at the end of a word rather than a tall "s," which is still used inside a word. Brown's Plates 28-32 exemplify these general characteristics of Gothic Textualis script.


Portland, Lewis & Clark College, Special Collections, 4.1

Leaf from a Book of Hours made for Sir John Fastolf, Rouen c. 1440


ff. 1r:

ll. 1-7 Psalm 39

Begins: magnificetur dominus qui diligunt sa|lutare

Ends: es deus meus ne tarda|veris.

ll. 7-9

Complaceat tibi domine ut | eruas me domine ad adiuvandum | me respice.

ll. 9

ante § ana domine psalmus. |

ll. 10-16 Psalm 40

Begins: Beatus qui intelligit super | egenum

Ends: tradat eum in animam | inimicorum eius. |

ff. 1v:

Psalm 40:4 through 40:8

ll. 1-16

Begins: Dominus opem ferat illi super | lectum

Ends: adversum me | cogitabant mala mihi. |

This leaf is a leaf from a Book of Hours.




ff. 1v:

"86 ST11O66-86" is penciled into the lower left-hand corner. Because this is written in a modern hand, a pencil was used, and its serial number quality suggests that it was written by the seller of this leaf. In the center of the lower margin, there is also a penciled price ("$325—").

Pricking and Ruling

Ruled frame dimensions: 100 x 68 mm

The ruling seems to have been done with a compass due to the thin, light, pencil-like lines. There are no visible pricking holes.

ff. 1r:

Writing begins below the top line, writing is on the line

Decoration remains to the left of the left margin

One column, 16 lines

ff. 1v:

Writing begins below the top line, writing is on the line

One column, 16 lines


ff. 1r:

The text on this page is arranged in a single column within the ruled frame of sixteen lines. The text is set slightly left of the center, leaving the margins on all four sides wide. The left margin is dominated by a decorative vine that runs along the length of the ruled frame of the text. Line endings that do not reach the right end of the ruled frame are extended to the right by blue, red, and gold painted bars that fill this extra space. These line-fillers occur at the right ends of lines two and sixteen. Versals are present on the left side of the third, fifth, tenth/eleventh, and thirteenth lines. There is a paraph (§) in line nine after "ante" marked in red and before "ana domine psalmus|" which marks the beginning of Psalm 40. On the tenth line, the versal takes up the start of two lines for it marks the beginning of Psalm 40 with a more elaborate capital "B" in "Beatus." The script is uniform throughout, save for the versals.

ff. 1v:

The initials (litterae notabiliores) beginning lines one, four, six, nine, twelve, and fourteen are illuminated with red and blue pigments as well as gold leaf. In line one, "D" is lettered in gold leaf on a blue background and red filling; both blue and red pigments are highlighted by thin white patterns within them. In line four, "E" is lettered in gold leaf on a red background and blue filling; the blue filling is accented by white dots. In line six, the "I" is lettered in gold leaf. If one thought of the entire initial as a ticket, the left side and section under the feet of the "I" would be the sections colored red, while the right side and section above the head of the "I" would be colored blue; both pigments contain thin white designs within them. In line nine, the "E" follows the same design as the "E" in line four. In line twelve, the "E" is lettered in gold leaf on a blue background and filled with red; both pigments are highlighted with white patterns. In line fourteen, the "A" is lettered in gold leaf on a red background with blue filling and blue tips on the right side of the shape of the initial as a whole; the blue filling contains thin white patterned lines.

There are bar-shaped line-fillers decorated with blue and red pigments as well as gold leaf at the right ends of lines eight, eleven, thirteen, and sixteen. In line eight, the bar is seems to consist of four segments, colored (from left to right) blue, red, blue, blue. The segments are separated by gold leaf shapes (from left to right) shaped like a nail with the tip pointing right, a circle, and another nail with the tip pointing right. Within the blue and red segments are white lines forming triangular patterns. In line eleven, the bar is split into a blue segment and red segment; both contain white lines forming wave patterns and the two are separated by gold leaf the shape of a circle. In line thirteen, the bar is divided by thirds (blue, red, blue) which are separated by smaller gold leaf bars pointed down diagonally to the right; the blue and red sections are lined with white triangle patterns. In line sixteen, the bar is formed from a blue section and red section separated by a gold leaf triangle pointed upwards; the blue segment has a white-lined wave pattern.


ff. 1r:

ds d(omin)us

diligt diligu(n)t

ā a(ut)

de d(omi)ne

a an(te)

psal psalm(us)

e eu(m)

ī i(n)

aīam a(n)i(m)am

ff. 1v:

₽ p(er)

e ei(us)

miser`e miserere

aīam a(n)i(m)am

qչ q(uoniam)

. t(ibi)

dixert dixeru(n)t

advers adversu(m)


ff. 1r:

A simple punctus is used to indicate the end of a sentence. There is a paraph (§) in line 9.

ff. 1v:

A simple punctus is used to indicate the end of a sentence.


This leaf contains no evidence of correction.


ff. 1r:

The only shape present in the margin is the vine (see "Decoration") in the left margin connecting to the initials of the text.

ff. 1v:

There is no marginalia present.

Provenance and History

This leaf is from a Book of Hours made for Sir John Fastolf in Rouen. He likely owned the manuscript after he retired from military service in 1440 (Jokinen). This manuscript was most likely done by (or in the style of) the Fastolf Master who worked mostly in Rouen (Pirages). The Fastolf Master likely studied under the Bedford Master as well as the Boucicaut Master due to the similarities between layout, script, and very similar vine work and leaf shape within these vines. The manuscript was most likely produced around 1440, for the Fastolf Master was active during this time. While the computer-printed sticker placed on the manuscript by an archivist claims that the manuscript was created in Rouen, France, the work could have also been created in England, where the Fastolf Master fled before the surrender of Rouen to the French in 1449 ("Master of Sir John Fastolf"). If it was created in England, the manuscript would be dated around 1450 instead of around 1440.

This leaf is now part of Lewis & Clark College's collection "History of the Book: Leaf Collection, 1250-1939" in the Special Collections and Archives of Aubrey R. Watzek Library in Portland, Oregon. Paul Merchant generously donated this leaf to the college in 2011.

Object Number



“MSS 1,” Manuscript Leaves , accessed September 21, 2023,