*under construction*

09 October 2011

Bound For the Heart...

You can't get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me. -- C.S. Lewis

We are avid readers here in Museville. Nothing quiets the world like a weighty book in hand, a big, soft chair and a hot cup of tea. The hustle and bustle of life fades as the lovely departure commences into distant lands, others hearts, dreams and lives. Their love stories, history and adventure unfold as you lose yourself within the pages.

I have books stacked in every room of my house. On the shelves, the tables, under the tables... One of my guilty pleasures is collecting breathtakingly beautiful books -- everything is art, isn't it? Your soul begs to be surrounded in beauty. Life is just better inundated in beauty.

Well, how lucky am I when the book doubles up with the absolute obsession I have with ancient reliquaries and antique religious art...

Wait until you see these.
You might want to sit down.

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SPANGENBERG, JOHANNES. Postilla. 1794 (Silver binding). The information was written in olde German, but translate loosely to: Interpretation of the Epistles and gospels, on all Sundays and most distinguished celebrations by the Gantz year, written in pieces for Christians. Luneburg, Ster niche Buchdruckerey, 1794.

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Manuscript painting and bookbinding: Dionysius the Areopagite, Works 14th Century
Constantinople between 1403-1405. Binding: Paris, circa 1360 and end of the 14th, rebuilt in the 17th century. Offered by the Emperor Manuel II Palaeologus to the abbey of Saint-Denis

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Gospel of Saint Aure
9th century school of Reims. Binding of ivory and silver.

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Coptic Binding, 7th or 8th Century. Detached from: The Gospels, in Coptic.
Illuminated manuscript on vellum
Egypt: Monastery of Holy Mary Mother of God, Perkethoout near Hamuli, the Fayum, 7th or 8th century. Goatskin over papyrus boards; decorated with onlaid panels of red leather tracery sewn to a gilded leather ground, with plain edges
MS M.569. Purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan, 1911

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Binding: Paris, France, c. 1200, massive wooden boards with metal fittings, sewn on 5 thongs, with a 15th c. painting 21x13 cm of the Flight into Egypt by the Master of the Osservanza, deriving loosely from Fra Angelico’s panel in the Museo di San Marco, Firenze. It is held in place by 4 strips of copper gilt, Romanesque Mosan work with repeated stamped impressions of a palmette within an arch, struck from stamps used in the workshop of Nicholas of Verdun and his circle in Köln (ca. 1181-1230). 4 metal gilt beaded-edged frames divided into rectangular compartments enclosing purple velvet, lower cover with red velvet. The original central enamel or ivory plaque was replaced by the present Master of the Osservanza panel in 1724.

Treasures of the heart. There just aren't words. So I'll just leave it at that.

Have a beautiful weekend.
xo isa


photo1: Bromer Booksellers, photo 2-4: RMN Grandpalais, photo 5: stmaterne, photo 6: RMN Grandpalais, Photo 7: Schoyen Collection. Information compiled by Yamo Bato.


helen tilston said...

You are right one needs a pot of tea to sit and savour these incredible ancient reliquaries. Truly breath-taking

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Oh my stars.

vicki archer said...

Treasures indeed Isa....Enjoy your Sunday.....xv

La Table De Nana said...

So intricate!Unbelievable treasures..thank you for sharing these with us..

Ils sont magnifiques ces bouqins~

Beauty calms:)

Bruce Barone said...


How beautiful!!!

Deborah said...

Love everything in this post, from the large cup of tea and a book to the stunning beauty of the ancient. Beautiful.

a quiet life said...

too pretty to read, i would never open them...

Anonymous said...

Isn't it funny in such a material world finding that little gem of an old book brings such joy! And the tea....with a cookie is heaven on earth.


Mel said...

These are stunning! Thank you for sharing them with us.

I have books stacked everywhere as well, but none compare to these treasures.

Mona Thompson Providence Ltd. said...

Thanks sooo much for stopping by today, so I could find you. This is such a lovely post. What treasures!!! Looking forward to our connection. Have a great week. Mona

Millie said...

Somehow me thinks nobody will be blogging about the inherent beauty of a Kindle in 300 years time. These are breathtakingly divine dear Sista of the Mysterious.
Millie xx

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Hi Dear Isa
Imagine seeing these 'in person'.. so fabulous.. I always wanted to see the 'illuminated manuscripts' and they were here in Australia once but sadly I didn't get there to see them... Absolutely gorgeous.. all of them..

Thanks for your kind words over my way... It was a bit of a shock to have panicked half way up .. and alone.. haha.. Have a great week.. ciao xxx Julie

LaPouyette said...

Beautiful, beautiful!

As a German and because Gutenberg printed the first bible, I appreciate even more your post with these wonderful pictures!

Truly - "Bound for the Heart" !

Thank you, Isa

Warmest wishes,

Acquired Objects said...

OMG these are amazing!!! I love that first one and the binding...WOW! I'm glad I was already sitting down.

Carla said...

You definately need to be sitting down to look at those. Wow, that is the true art of book making. Carla

Murano Chandeliers said...

These are incredibly very beautiful. The carvings on the ivory is very detailed. This is awesome.

Willow's Quiet Corner said...

Such magical books! Amazing how just the covers seem to be full of stories of their own! Just beautiful!

for the love of a house said...

amazing, beautiful post Isa! stunning really.


bedroom chandeliers said...

great post, perfect to look at while drinking a big cup of tea

Monica Roberts said...

Whoops ... meant to comment here, instead of on your newer post.

Monica said...
I do believe those are knees I 'hear' buckling, and more than a single heartbeat skipping at the sight of these treasures ... should be that all especially precious words bear ‘the beauty of careful love' embedded into their bindings and covers. I'm privileged to own an old French missal wrapped in the most incredible smoky rose velvet set against tarnished gold edged pages, with each cover corner, front and back, graced by gilded ormolu filigree protectors, and the all of it held together with a clasp fit for the 'Book of Life' heaven supposedly records our trespasses in ... every time my eyes fall on this little wonder I feel blessed it resides in my home!

Elizabeth@ Pine Cones and Acorns said...

Oh my goodness, there are not even words for the beauty of these books! I am in awe.

Thank you for sharing such beautiful images!

I hope that you are feeling well, or as well as can be. Praying for you and your contiued path to better health.