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The treasures of the library and archives of the Condé museum of Chantilly

Très Riches Heures of duc de Berry

15th century manuscript on parchment. Made up of 206 leaves, each with two columns. 66 large and 65 small miniatures. Bound in red leather, with the arms of the Spinola and Serra families. The manuscript is kept in a box covered with an engraved silver plaque by Antoine Vechte (1799-1868).

The “Très Riches Heures of Duc de Berry” is reputed to be one of the finest manuscripts in the world. The culmination of over 80 years of work phased between 1412 and 1489, this book of hours was commissioned by Duke Jean I of Berry from the Limbourg brothers in the 15th century. It was acquired by the Duke of Aumale in 1856.

The Hours of Etienne Chevalier by Jean Fouquet

“The Hours of Étienne Chevalier”, painted by Jean Fouquet, are the pinnacle of his art as an illuminator and one of the treasures of western art. Kept by the family of Étienne Chevalier, the manuscript was dismantled and dispersed in the 18th century. The Duke of Aumale purchased forty leaves from it in 1891. He created the Santuario in the Château de Chantilly to exhibit the leaves framed and laid out in groups of four.

Letter from André Le Nôtre to the Prince of Condé on 21 September 1683

The Archives of the Château de Chantilly are invaluable. Chantilly’s archives are an essential element of France’s major national archive collections. The connections between Chantilly and the great architect Le Nôtre are well known. At the request of the Grand Condé, the gardener of Versailles created a sumptuously balanced and harmonious design. His letter of 21 September 1683 was written when this work was being conducted and makes it possible, with other letters, to reconstitute its history.

Book cover in engraved red gold for the Breviary of Jeanne d’Evreux

Illuminated parchment manuscript from the 14th century. Breviary of Jeanne de Navarre, Countess of Evreux, Queen of France by marriage to Charles IV. Anxious to carefully protect this work, the Duke of Aumale commissioned a book-shaped case from goldsmith Paul-Emile Froment-Meurisse. The upper flat features a sheet of engraved red gold depicting two angels in silver designed by Luc-Olivier Merson, an enamel shield with the arms of France and another with the arms of Evreux. The clasp also features an enamel shield with the arms of Navarre (chains).

Binding of the Works of Guillaume Coquillart, by Trautz-Bauzonnet

French binding from the 19th century by Trautz-Bauzonnet in red leather, with blue, green and lemon leather mosaic compartments and a gilded decor of foliage, red leather lining and gilded, marble effect spine. The sixth of the twenty-three mosaics by Trautz, created for the bibliophile Armand Cigongne in 1855.

The Book of King Modus and Queen Ratio

Printed in Chambéry: by Anthoine Neyret in 1486, first, very rare edition. French binding, 19th century, signed by Bauzonnet, red leather, gilded decor, adorned corners and back, green leather lining, gilded, marble effect spine. Written circa 1370, the text by Henry de Ferrières is the oldest treatise in French on hunting and falconry, and is also the oldest printed work exclusively dedicated to hunting.

The Life of Saint Denis, binding embroidered with the arms of Marie de Medici

A manuscript dedicated to Queen Marie de Medici, on the life of Saint Denis. One of the ten embroidered bindings made in France during the reign of Louis XIII. Original binding in purple silk embroidered with gold, flowers and coloured silk ornaments, Marie de Medici’s figure and crown of fine pearls, long back with semé of fleurs de lys in a frame, mauve gros de Tours ribbon, gold lace edge.

Map of Chantilly by Mérigot (18th century)

Promenades and itineraries in the gardens of Chantilly, decorated with a map and twenty prints depicting the most significant views by Marquis de Girardin, drawn and engraved by Mérigot. 18th century binding, red leather, adorned back, gilded spine.
This precious collection presents several views of the domain (château and grounds) as it was prior to the Revolution in 1789.