Un Graduale Olivetano: Un Percorso nella Miniatura Lombarda del Quattrocento


This illuminated manuscript, a gradual of large size which the whole congregation of monks could see and read as they sang in choir (just as they are shown doing in an illustration in the manuscript itself), was previously unknown to scholars and has only recently come to light. It was produced for a monastery of the Olivetan order, a branch of the Benedictines with the particular reverence for the Virgin Mary – probably Santa Maria di Baggio near Milan.


It contains fine miniatures which can be attributed to Girolamo da Milano (died 1449), otherwise known as the "Olivetan Master". Indeed the manuscript sheds considerable light on the oeuvre and style of this master, otherwise a shadowy figure known chiefly for illuminations of detached leaves or cuttings. This important new discovery is discussed by the Italian scholar Milvia Bollati, who uses it to throw further light on Girolamo, the Olivetans and on manuscript illumination in the period between late ('International') Gothic and early Renaissance. 


Published in association with Sam Fogg and Les Enluminures.

  • By Milvia Bollati

    64 pages, paperback

    280 x 240 mm, 50 colour illustrations
    ISBN: 978 1 903470 90 9

© 2017 by Paul Holberton publishing