Unrecorded Book of Hours could auction for $1.3m at Christie's

A previously unrecorded copy of the Book of Hours will highlight Christie's Valuable Manuscripts and Printed Books sale in London on November 20 with an estimate of £500,000-800,000 ($810,950-1.3m).

Book of Hours Claude
The Book of Hours has been rebound in 19th century Morocco gilt leather

The circa 1515 vellum manuscript was illuminated by the mysterious Master of Claude de France, known only by this nickname which he received after painting two prayer books for Claude de France - Francois I's queen in the early 16th century.

The high proportion of female saints depicted, along with the feminine form of the devotion to the sacrament, indicate that the book was made for a woman - quite possibly Queen Claude de France.

We have this document signed by Henry VIII in 1513 - the year he invaded France.

Nicolaus Copernicus' De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium, Libri VI is offered with an estimate of £400,000-600,000 ($648,360-972,540).

Nicolaus Copernicus Christie's
Copernicus' manuscript features 148 woodcut illustrations

Printed by Johann Petreius (c.1497-1550) in 1542, the first edition copy is the most important scientific publication of the 16th century.

It sets out Copernicus' theory that the Earth orbits the Sun - a breakthrough that set in motion much of the scientific revelations of the following centuries.

This copy features the errata leaf printed on the verso of the title page, present in just 30 of the surviving 277 copies of the manuscript.

A copy of the Book of Genesis, dating to the mid 12th century, is expected to make £200,000-300,000 ($324,180-486,270).

Printed on vellum in northern France, the manuscript features an early example of the glossa ordinaria - a precursor to the modern glossary, which inserted explanations of passages and meanings of words into the main body of the text.

It features the original 12th century binding, which comprises skin stretched over oak boards.

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