Folio 79r

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Belles Heures of Jean de France, duc de Berry, 1405–1408/9. Herman, Paul, and Jean de Limbourg (Franco-Netherlandish, active in France by 1399–1416). French; Made in Paris. Ink, tempera, and gold leaf on vellum; 9 3/8 x 6 5/8 in. (23.8 x 16.8 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Cloisters Collection, 1954 (54.1.1).

Ruled Page, Folio 79r

The page is ruled for text but was left unwritten, permitting easy viewing of the structure of text pages. Red lines are drawn in pen, forming two columns for text to be inserted by the scribe. The ruled lines were guided by prick holes near the edge of the parchment, but the prick holes were mostly trimmed off. The ruled lines can sometimes be discerned under some of the painted scenes in the traditional sections of the manuscript (see the right margin of Folio 57r).

For more about prick holes in medieval manuscripts, see “The Secrets of Architectural Drawings” in the Pen and Parchment exhibition blog.