Armenian Illuminated Bible

SKU X.0369

1583 AD


9.625″ (24.4cm) high x 7.25″ (18.4cm) wide



Gallery Location



This gorgeous illuminated Armenian Bible consists of six hundred and twenty pages. The pages of text are generally arranged in two vertical columns ranging from twenty to twenty two lines written in black characters, although some words and capitals are distinguished with red ink. There are twenty full page miniature illuminated scenes detailing the life of Christ. Some of these scenes include the Annunciation, the Nativity, the Presentation in the Temple, the Baptism of Christ, the Transfiguration, the Resurrection of Lazarus, the Entry into Jerusalem, the Washing of the Feet, the Crucifixion, the Entombment, the Descent into Hell, the Ascension, and the Last Judgment. In addition, there are full page portraits of the four gospel writers: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. These illuminated pages feature an extended palette of colours, including blues, greens, and yellows. Other decorations are featured throughout the the text, including floral and bird motifs. The entire book is encased in a leather binding and the front cover is decorated with an incised cross partially covered by a silver repoussée cross adorned with five rosettes. The colophon, an inscription in the back of a manuscript that details facts related to its production, mentions two scribes by name: Lucas (most likely the illustrator) and his sister Elisabeth under the sponsorship of Mirza Djan. It also states that the work was produced for the borough of Garbi located in the plains of the Ararat Mountains in the year 1583 A.D.

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