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“Book of Hours, Use of Rome, the ‘Hours of Bonaparte Ghislieri’; formerly known as ‘The Albani Hours’. The manuscript includes:ff. 1r-12v: Calendar.ff. 13r-14r: Psalm 90.ff. 16r-73v: Hours of the Virgin, use of Rome.ff. 75r-100r: Hours of the Virgin for Advent and Christmas.ff. 101-103v: Mass of the Virgin Mary.ff. 105r-126r: Seven Penitential Psalms with Litany and prayers.ff. 128r-131r: Hours of the Cross.ff. 133r-135v: Hours of the Holy Spirit [1]”. The descriptions of the pages below have all been taken from this source.

This manuscript was made in Bologna, Italy and presumably made for a member of the Ghislieri family [1]. Malacological items are always in the borders of miniatures, encountered as follows:

Folio 027v, with an initial ‘C'(antate) of St Catherine of Alexandria, with a partial border of flowers, leaves, a bird, and a snail (Psalm 95 in Matins).



In the lower-left corner, a yellowish snail adorned with two tentacles coming from the aperture of a blue dextral shell, nearly three whorls large and with indications of growth striae. The snail is figured in ‘2D squased’ mode (snail seen from the right side, shell in top view), and is without tail.

Folio 055v: Initial ‘D'(eus) of St Peter with a book, with a partial border of flowers, leaves, and a bird (Sext).



In the lower border, a whitish sinistral shell seen in top view, the apertural lip seemingly broken, and hints of growth striae on the whorls.

Folio 058v: Initial ‘D'(eus) of St Jerome, with a partial border of flowers, leaves, and a bird (None).



In the top border a similar shell is present.

Folio 062r: Initial ‘D'(eus) of St Claire, with a partial border of flowers, leaves, and a bird (Vespers).



And similar one in the top border.

On folio 069r, with initial ‘C'(onverte) of St Barbara holding her tower, with a partial border of flowers, leaves, a snail, and a bird (Compline).



A snail in ‘2D squased’ view is present in the left border. The animal is brownish, and has no tail; the sinistral shell has the suggestion of growth striae, plus a colour marking of axial stripes and dots.

In the Hours to the Virgin for Advent and Christmas: f. 74v: The Annunciation, with a border with flowers, grotesques, and a deer in a roundel in the lower margin.





Another snail, this time with four tentacles, also without tail, is present in the top border; it has an eye-spot. Inside the miniature two hybrids are present, which seem to be malacomorph (the right one can only partially be seen, but the aperture is just visible).

Folio 075r: Initial ‘D'(omine) of the Virgin and Child, with an illusionistic border including flowers, strawberries, a bird, a snail, and a butterfly (Matins).



This page has a similar snail, this time with two tentacles again, but also without tail; also having an eye-spot.

On f. 101r:  Initial ‘S'(alve) of the Virgin Mary, with a full scatter border including flowers, a snail, and grotesque hybrid creatures (Mass of the Virgin Mary).



A whitish, dextral shell is tucked away in the left border, the tail of the bird on top of it is inserted in the aperture.

Folio 104v: David playing the dulcimer, with a scatter border of flowers, leaves, a snail, and grotesque hybrid creatures (Seven Penitential Psalms).



A similar shell is present in the top border.

And finally, on f. 127v: Jerome in the wilderness, kneeling before a cross with his lion at his side, with a scatter border of flowers, leaves, and grotesque hybrid creatures (preceding the Hours of Cross).



Another whitish shell (this time sinistral) is seen in the lower border.

All shells have relatively many whorls, usually more than three; the snails all lack tails. They are exclusively in the borders, which are otherwise filled with flowers, leaves, birds and hybrids.

[1] BLL, Ms. Yates Thompson 29. http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts/FullDisplay.aspx?ref=Yates_Thompson_MS_29.