Pretty pictures: from paint to print. Images depicting the Virgin Mary from books of hours to religious emblem books

Howie, Candace Cameron (2013) Pretty pictures: from paint to print. Images depicting the Virgin Mary from books of hours to religious emblem books. MPhil(R) thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This study aims to investigate the use of images within the context of accompanying texts from Books of Hours through the transition to print which encompasses printed Books of Hours, their Protestant cousins, the English Prayer Book and finally Emblem books. Images relating to the Virgin Mary in Books of Hours and in later printed emblem books will be compared and contrasted. The changes in style, not least due to advances in technology and its ramifications for society as a whole, and the images depicting the shifts in Christian beliefs between the fourteenth to sixteenth centuries can be seen in the transition between devotional Books of Hours to Emblem Books. These books, though they have different functions, are examples of some of the important and influential types of literature during Europe’s early literary history. The first three chapters are an assimilation of previous research which will aid the contextualisation of the findings of the case studies. Changes in style will be investigated as well as the choices of image between the traditional manuscript Book of Hours and the printed forms which now incorporate Catholic devotional texts and a Protestant prayer book from contemporary England. With the fierce divide between the Reformation and Counter Reformation camps on the topic of images and their treatment this doctrinal schism should be apparent between the works. This thread will be continued to establish whether this trend was equally apparent between the works of various authors during the Renaissance, and later, in religious emblem books. Emblem books were produced by many authors of distinct religious, political and philosophical stances. For the purpose of making comparable links between these genres that span centuries and have survived through political, religious and technological change using representations of the Virgin Mary, a central part of Christianity, as a litmus test by which the differences between the development of devotional texts can be gauged. The reason for choosing Mary to examine changing styles is the fact that Book of Hours are organised around the Hours of Virgin and are dedicated to the Virgin Mary. This provides an abundance of examples as she is the centre of these books. This can then be compared to the use of her image in sources which are not necessarily orientated or dedicated to her to gauge the difference in the works produced. The case studies that have been chosen illustrate a range of authors and ideologies. This will allow a comparison to be made of the possible effects of the different denominations of those producing these books, and if this influenced their choice of message displayed through the illustrations, establishing whether the divided factions used the images in the same way or whether they used the same images in stark contrast to promote their own agenda and opinions.

Item Type: Thesis (MPhil(R))
Qualification Level: Masters
Keywords: Books of Hours, Emblems, Virgin Mary
Subjects: Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z004 Books. Writing. Paleography
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Modern Languages and Cultures > French
Funder's Name: UNSPECIFIED
Supervisor's Name: Grove, Dr. Laurence and Simpson, Dr. James
Date of Award: 2013
Depositing User: Miss Candace C Howie
Unique ID: glathesis:2013-4261
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 14 Jun 2013 08:15
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2013 08:17
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/4261

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