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Border ornament from a choirbook made for Cardinal Giulio de' Medici

  • Object:

    Manuscript cutting

  • Place of origin:

    Rome (city) (illuminated)

  • Date:

    ca. 1513-1523 (illuminated)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Matteo da Milano (illuminator)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Water-based pigments, gilding and ink on parchment

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level E, case I, shelf 31, box D

Distinctive forms of ornament were developed in Italy at the end of the 15th century. Classical motifs were copied from ancient Roman remains. They include designs based on tall candelabra with vases and cameo busts. Roundels with portraits or devices (heraldic emblems) were inserted in margins and at the top and bottom of pages.

Physical description

Specimen of a manuscript

Place of Origin

Rome (city) (illuminated)


ca. 1513-1523 (illuminated)


Matteo da Milano (illuminator)

Materials and Techniques

Water-based pigments, gilding and ink on parchment


Height: 355 mm, Width: 245 mm

Historical context note

Data taken from notes compiled by Rowan Watson. The full text of the entry is as follows:

'Cat. no. 366
MISSAL of Cardinal Giulio de' Medici
Cut-out foursided border, left side a [fountain] design and a vignette lettered "Iulius Medici S Car" ; right side a vignette with Zacharias portrait; top with vignette lettered "Ioannes est nomen eius" and arms (Or, 5 gold balls, blue ball with 3 fleur-de-lys) surmounted by a cardinal's hat) in lower margin supported by two cherubs.

Italy (Florence?), Early 16th century
355 x 245 mm.

Acquired with the George Salting Bequest, 1910 no. 3283 [1923 cat. says 2131]
1923 cat, 90'

Descriptive line

Cut-out four sided border from the choirbook made for Cardinal Giulio de' Medici; by Matteo da Milano; Italy (Rome); ca 1513-1523


Parchment; Ink; Pigments


Illumination; Writing

Subjects depicted

Cherubs; Fountain; Cardinal's hat


Manuscript cutting; Manuscripts; Medieval and renaissance


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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