Early Nineteenth-Century German Decorated Prayer Book for a Lady
[Germany or Austria?], 1819.
Decorated manuscript on paper. (BRMS 169)
This German-language manuscript prayer book, produced in 1819 for Josephine Hofmanin by Joseph Jillich, is enhanced with a variety of decorative materials using several different techniques. Colored silks and gold foil, for example, are underlaid behind paper with carefully designed cut-outs to form letters, patterns, and images, as exhibited here. Additional cut-outs, paste-ins, and calligraphic headings were employed on different pages. A miniature polychrome portrait of St. Joseph, another miniature polychrome portrait of an unidentified female saint, and an engraved print of the Crucifixion signed by Zenger of Augsburg contribute additional illustrative elements. The prayer book was bound in tree-calf, with the owner's initials stamped in a red-colored oval on the front cover, and housed in a matching marbled slipcase.