The Hunting Book of Gaston Phébus
Paris, Bibliotheque nationale, MS fr. 616.
356 p., , 276 in colour, 150 x 200 mm, 1998
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This reproduction of the French text written by Gaston Phébus
between 1387 and 1389, with its enchanting miniature, vigorous script,
wide decorative borders and beautiful initials, can be counted among
the most seductive creations of Parisian book illumination of the early
With its enchanting miniature , vigorous script, wide decorative
borders and beautiful initials, the manuscript reproduced here can be
counted among the most seductive creations of Parisian book
illumination of the early 15th century. The French text, written by the
colourful figure Gaston Phébus, Count of Foix, between 1387 and 1389,
contains not only technical details about the practice of huntsmanship
in the 14th century, but also exact descriptions of the wild animals
which were then hunted. Of the 44 known manuscripts with Gaston
Phébus's text - most of them dating from the 15th century and a few
from the beginning of the 16th century - the present manuscript, dated
1405- 10, is one of the best known and most important. All its 87
miniatures are reproduced here in colour. The commentary, by an expert
in hunting iconography, not only describes the subjects matter of each
miniature, but also summarizes and explains the text of each chapter.
This publication is also distributed by: ISD, Marston