Treasures of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles

Getty Museum (Los Angeles, USA)

Alternate Titles:

Schätze des J. Paul Getty Museum

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Alternate Titles

Schätze des J. Paul Getty Museum

Extent / Format

10 leaves / N/A

11th-15th century
Artist / School

Lieven van Lathem, Master of the Ingeborg Psalter, Simon de Hesdin and others

Former owners

Peter and Irene Ludwig

Short description

An exquisite selection of ten pages from the most significant works of one of the most renowned manuscript collections in the world. The pages originate from manuscripts from the most highly prized artistic landscapes of illumination and in doing so encompass the time period stretching from the Early Middle Ages up to the 16th century in a grand overview.

Facsimile editions available


Treasures of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles

The compendium contains ten pages from the renowned manuscript collection of one of the most important museums in the world. In doing so, a selection from the time period stretching from the Early Middle Ages up to the 16th century and the development of medieval illumination is made comprehensible.

An Exquisite Selection

The ten pages, assembled here as the “Treasures of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles”, bear witness to the uniqueness of the collection. From it were chosen only the finest and most significant books, and from each of these a page was chosen, respectively, to present the splendor and artistry of the entire manuscript. As such, the focus is clearly placed on the artistic design of the richly illustrated book treasures.
For example, among the selected book treasures is a picture page from an 11th century Ottonian sacramentary with the scene of the Three Maries at the grave. A magnificent illustrated initial, opulently adorned with gold and luminous color, originates from a 13th century French Psalter. A page from the Prayer Book of Charles the Bold, which demonstrates the high point of 15th century Flemish illumination, is chosen as an example of the Flemish artistic landscape. Finally, the unbelievably fine book art of France is represented through a miniature from the Book of Hours of Louis XII.
Thus the compendium of examples encompasses all the various forms and types of books from all of the highly-prized artistic landscapes of illumination, whether German, French, Flemish, or Italian. Through the direct juxtaposition of the individually different and yet comparable pages, it is possible to comprehend the development of medieval book art from its beginnings in the Early Middle Ages up to the 16th century.

A Top-Class Collection

The selection of ten pages from the highest quality works of the manuscript collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles reflects the collection’s richness. The museum possesses an exquisite selection of special books, all of which are only of the highest quality.
The heart of the collection of the American museum is formed by the assemblage originating from Germany called Peter and Irene Ludwig. It was brought together with the consultation of H.P. Kraus, the book dealer and important antiquarian of manuscripts based in New York since 1939, into a collection of the highest quality. These manuscripts – numbering 144 in total – were bought up by the J. Paul Getty Museum in 1983 and comprise the foundation of the renowned manuscript collection of the one of the most significant museums in the world.
The Individual Pages:
The Three Maries at the Tomb
Sacramentary, Ms. Louis, vol. 2, fol. 19v
Ottonian, Mainz or Fulda, ca. 1025-1050
St. Mathew Writing His Gospel
Evangeliary, Ms. Louis II 3, fol. 9v
German, Helmarshausen, ca. 1120-1140
The Creation of the World
Stammheim Missal, Ms. 64, fol. 10v
German, Benedictine Abbey of St. Michael, Hildehesim, ca. 1170-80
Miniature from a Psalter, Ms. 4, Individual Sheet 1
German, Würzburg, ca. 1240
Initial C: King David Playing the Bells
Master of the Ingeborg Psalter
Psalter, Ms. 66, fol. 105v
French, probably Noyon, after 1205
Two Fishers on a Sea Monster
Bestiary, Ms. Lousi XV 3, fol. 89v
Franco-Flemish, Thérouanne?, ca. 1270
The Call to St. Peter and St. Andrew; Initial D: St. Andrew; Initial Q: St. Peter
Master of the Brussels Initials
Missal, Ms. 34, fol. 172a
Italy, Bologna, 1389-1404
St. Michael Fighting the Demons
Lieven van Latham, illuminator; Nicolas Spierinc, scribe
Hours of Charles the Bold, Ms. 37, fol. 15v
Flemish, Ghent or Antwerp, 1469 and ca. 1471
The Moderate and the Immoderate
Master of the Dresden Prayer Book
Fragment of “Faits et dits mémorables des romains”
Translated by Simon de Hesdin and Nicolas Gonesse after Valerius Maximus “Facta et dicta memorabilia”
Ms. 43, Flemish, Bruges, ca. 1475-1480
Bathsheba at her Bath
Jean Bourdicon
Miniature from the Hours of Louis XII, Ms. 79
French, Tours, 1498-1499

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