A masterpiece of the French Renaissance
Purchased by the royal patron in 1538, King François I’s Book of Hours is a dazzling masterpiece of the French Renaissance. A splendid mix of precious stones, metalwork and illumination, this unprecedented gem-like prayer book bears witness to this flourishing period. Written entirely by hand, with sixteen full-page painted illustrations, it has a sumptuous gold binding adorned with precious stones that is a gem in its own right.
The extraordinary history of this manuscript saw it pass through the hands of François I, Henri IV and Cardinal Mazarin, before it made its way to England in the early 18th century. Today listed in France as a “National Treasure,” it is a work that is unparalleled in French or foreign public collections and is a unique vestige of the House of Valois’ treasures, which were dispersed over the centuries.
This new Tous mécènes! campaign is the unique opportunity to bring this miraculously preserved jewel back to France. It would regain its rightful place in the museum’s royal collections, inherited by the Louvre.
Become a patron and take part in this project!
Thanks to the exceptional support of LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton, the Louvre has already gathered half of the €10,000,000 needed. The outstanding participation of more than 6 800 donors has allowed the Louvre to collect €1,000,000 in two months. The campaign goes on until February 15, 2018 to acquire this masterpiece and enhance its display.
It is a work that is unparalleled in French or foreign public collections