Amherst, William Amhurst Tyssen (1835-1909)
This gradual is from the Dominican Convent St. Katharinental and represents one of the most important artworks of the Gothic period in Switzerland. Created around 1312 in the convent itself, it was probably illuminated in the area around Lake Constance. It contains more than 80 pen-flourish initials, more than 60 historiated initials and 5 I-initials, which consist of several historiated medallions. Several pieces of the last two I-initials, whose medallions were cut out and sold separately, are known today; they are dispersed among various museums and libraries. In addition to the initials, in the floral friezes there are represented numerous kneeling and praying Dominican nuns as well as other secular donors (e.g., 3v, 18v, 90r, 159v, 161r etc.). Until the 19th century, the gradual was in use in the convent; around 1820 it was ceded to an antiquarian book dealer in Konstanz, Franz Joseph Aloys Castell (1796-1844). After 1860 it was owned by the English collectors Sir William Amherst of Hackney and Sir Charles Dyson Perrins (1864-1958). Upon the death of the latter, his library was offered for sale through Sotheby's, and the manuscript was purchased by the Swiss Confederation with the support of the Gottfried Keller-Foundation and the Canton of Thurgau.
Online Since: 03/22/2017