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LOT 59

The Shepochkin Apostol Apostol, containing the Acts of the Apostles...

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The Shepochkin Apostol
Apostol, containing the Acts of the Apostles and all New Testament canonical epistles, with interpretations by John Chrysostom, Athanasios of Alexandria, Severianus of Gabala and other church fathers; St Paul's travels, his death in Rome, and his Roman citizenship; the Ten Commandments, in Church Slavonic, decorated manuscript on paper [Russia, c.1500]
A monumental, 15th/16th-century Apostol in Russian Church Slavonic, with a beautiful, full-page illuminated miniature detailing 18 medallions of Christ, the Virgin and Saints; possibly the only copy in private hands.

412 x 260mm. i (paper) + 393 leaves, lacking first few leaves but otherwise complete, in gatherings of 8, early foliations in arabic numerals starting with '2' in lower margins, modern pencil foliation 1-393 followed here, two columns of 36 lines written in Cyrillic semi-uncial in brown ink by a single scribe, headings, rubrics and initials in red, four very fine illuminated initials and headpieces of scrolling foliage contained within circles painted predominantly in blue, pink and green highlighted with white on highly burnished gold grounds on ff.80r, 107r, 124r, 129r, a very elaborate calligraphic headpiece and initial in geometric designs on a tessellated background in watercolour on f.23r, a full-page illuminated miniature of eighteen medallions of Christ, the Virgin and Saints connected by foliate vines encircling busts in colours with haloes in gold on f.22v, watermarks close to Briquet 12490 (Troyes, 1484) and a related version of Briquet 6118 (Grevenbroich, 1514) (a few crude repairs, narrow strips of paper pasted over portions of the text on ff.36r, 87r, and 391-392).

Binding:
Contemporary blind-stamped Russian binding of calf over wooden boards, sewn on 4 bands, 3 brass cornerpieces on upper cover (upper-left cornerpiece missing), fittings and central medallion showing St George facing to the right (rebacked, lower cover 19th century, lacking clasps). Fitted box.

Provenance:
(1) Anton Fedorovich Okunov, Kaluga merchant, 1825.

(2) P. Shepochkin, from 1825. Inscription at the foot of f.1 dated 29 November 1825 and signed by P. Shepochkin, recording that 'the manuscript was bought for 100 roubles from the Kaluga merchant Anton Fedorovich Okunov.'

(3) Paul M. Fekula (1905-1982): his MS 651, published in Matejic, 1983 and Keenan, 1988. His sale at Sotheby's, Russian Manuscripts from the Fourteenth to the Nineteenth Century From the Paul M. Fekula Collection, 29 November 1990, lot 78, for £57,200 to:

(4) The Schøyen Collection, MS 708.

Contents:
Introduction, lacking the beginning, ff.1-8; the Miracles of Saints Peter and Paul, ff.8v-9; Table of Contents, ff.9-11; List of St Paul's travels and a description of his death in Rome, f.11; On St Paul's citizenship, ff.11v-13; Table of Contents for all Epistles, ff.13-20v; Ten Commandments f.20v; List of Concepts discussed in the Interpretation of the Epistles f.21; blank f.22; Frontispiece f.22v; Interpretation of the Acts of the Apostles by St John Chrysostom and the following Church Fathers: Athanasios of Alexandria; Severianius of Gabala (of Antioch); Gregory of Nyssa; Camos; Didimus; Cyril of Alexandria; Ireneus 'Lugdiskij' [sic]; Presbyter Isihios; Isidor; Epiphanios of Cyprus; Presbyter Amonius; Eusebius of Emessa ('Amesiskij'), ff.23-79; blank f.79v; Interpretation of James's General Epistle by John Chrysostom, Cyril of Alexandria, Basil the Great, Maximos, ff.80-90; Interpretation of the First General Epistle of St Peter with Interpretations by John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, Amonius, Athanasios the Great, Severianos of Gabala, ff.90-101v; Second General Epistle of St Peter with Interpretations by John Chrysostom, Cyril of Alexandria, Ephraim of Syria, Eusebius of Emessa, Athanasios the Great, ff.102-106v; First General Epistle of St John with Interpretations by John Chrysostom and Cyril of Alexandria ff.107-108; blank f.108v; Interpretations of the First General Epistle of St John by Severianos of Gabala and Maximos the Confessor ff.109-118; Second General Epistle by St John with Interpretations by John Chrysostom f.118-118v; Third General Epistle by St John with Interpretations by John Chrysostom ff.118v-119v; General Epistle of St Jude with Interpretations by John Chrysostom ff.120-123v; blank f.124v; Introduction to St Paul's Epistles ff.124-129; Epistle to the Romans with Interpretations by Cyril of Alexandria, Theodorit, Genadios, Isidor, John Chrysostom, Severianos of Gabala, Oekumenios, Basil the Great, ff.129-171; Introduction to the First Epistle to the Corinthians, f.171-171v; First Epistle to the Corinthians with Interpretations by Theodor, Severianos, Oekumenios, Cyril of Alexandria, John Chrysostom, Genadios, Gregory, Methodios, ff.171v-216; Introduction to the Second Epistle to the Corinthians f.216v; Second Epistle to the Corinthians with Interpretations with Interpretations by Theodorit, Theodor, Oekumenios, John Chrysostom, ff.217-249; Introduction to the Epistle of the Galatians f.249-249v; Epistle to the Galatians with Interpretations by Severianos, Oekumenios, Theodor, Genadios, Theodorit, John Chrysostom, ff.250-267; Epistle to the Ephesians with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.267v-284v; Introduction to the Epistle to the Philippians ff.284v-285; Epistle to the Philippians with Interpretations by Oekumenios, ff.285-298; Introduction to the Epistle to the Colossians f.298-298v; Epistle to the Colossians with Interpretations by John Chrysostom, Oekumenios, Theodor, ff.298v-308v; Introduction to the Epistle to the Thessalonians ff.308v-309; Epistle to the Thessalonians with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.309-320; Introduction to the Second Epistle to the Thessalonians f.320; Second Epistle to the Thessalonians with Interpretations by Theodor, Severianos, Oekumenios, ff.320v-326; Introduction to the Epistle of the Hebrews ff.326-327; Epistle to the Hebrews with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.327v-362v; Introduction to the Epistle to Timothy ff.362v-363; the Epistle to Timothy with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.363v-376v; Introduction to the Second Epistle of Timothy ff.376v-377; Second Epistle to Timothy with Interpretations by Theodor and Oekumenios ff.377-386v; Introduction to the Epistle to Titus f.386v; the Epistle to Titus ff.387-391; Introduction to the Epistle to Philemon f.391-391v; the Epistle to Philemon with Interpretations ff.391v-393v.

Illumination:
The Apostol boasts some fine miniatures throughout, notably the full-page illuminated medallions of Christ, the Virgin and Apostles on f.22v. The iconographic figures, depicted waist-up, sit within medallion-like frames of intertwining vines. There are five rows of holy figures identified (top to bottom and left to right): row 1 - Virgin Mary; Christ; St John the Baptist; row 2 - St John the Theologian; St Peter; St Paul; St Matthew; row 3 - St Thomas; St Andrew; St James Alpheus; St Phillip; row 4 - St James; St Simon; St Bartholomew; St Jude; row 5 - Moses; David; Prophet Elijah. Each figure is identified by inscriptions in the gold-leaf haloes. The faces of St James Alpheus and St Phillip have been damaged (paint peeled off). The beautiful iconography echoes the frescoes of the Cathedral of the Annunciation in the Kremlin in Moscow.

There are additionally 4, strikingly intricate headpieces of floral motifs on highly-burnished, gold backgrounds in the neo-Byzantine style. These are on ff.80, 107, 124, 129, each also including large, illuminated initials in the same, detailed scrolling motifs. Ornamentations here are brightly coloured with blues, pinks, oranges, yellows and green.

In a different style but similar ornamentation, a large headpiece in watercolour on f.23. There are here black-ink floral motifs overlaid onto a blue and white checkerboard geometric pattern, surrounded by a multicoloured crenelated border, producing a very different effect to the other gold-backed motifs. The large initial on f.23 continues this geometric/floral interplay, although it is here left in black and white, creating a sharp contrast against the headpiece above. There is a final, narrow, one-column-wide headpiece drawn in black ink and coloured green, again of floral ornamentation, on f.327v.

Provenance
Keenan, E.L., ed., The Paul M. Fekula Collection: a Catalogue, New York, 1988, Fekula MS.651.

Matejic, M., Slavic Manuscripts from the Fekula Collection: a Description, Columbus, Ohio: Kosovo Publishing Company, 1983, F-XXVIII.

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Time, Location
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UK, London
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The Shepochkin Apostol
Apostol, containing the Acts of the Apostles and all New Testament canonical epistles, with interpretations by John Chrysostom, Athanasios of Alexandria, Severianus of Gabala and other church fathers; St Paul's travels, his death in Rome, and his Roman citizenship; the Ten Commandments, in Church Slavonic, decorated manuscript on paper [Russia, c.1500]
A monumental, 15th/16th-century Apostol in Russian Church Slavonic, with a beautiful, full-page illuminated miniature detailing 18 medallions of Christ, the Virgin and Saints; possibly the only copy in private hands.

412 x 260mm. i (paper) + 393 leaves, lacking first few leaves but otherwise complete, in gatherings of 8, early foliations in arabic numerals starting with '2' in lower margins, modern pencil foliation 1-393 followed here, two columns of 36 lines written in Cyrillic semi-uncial in brown ink by a single scribe, headings, rubrics and initials in red, four very fine illuminated initials and headpieces of scrolling foliage contained within circles painted predominantly in blue, pink and green highlighted with white on highly burnished gold grounds on ff.80r, 107r, 124r, 129r, a very elaborate calligraphic headpiece and initial in geometric designs on a tessellated background in watercolour on f.23r, a full-page illuminated miniature of eighteen medallions of Christ, the Virgin and Saints connected by foliate vines encircling busts in colours with haloes in gold on f.22v, watermarks close to Briquet 12490 (Troyes, 1484) and a related version of Briquet 6118 (Grevenbroich, 1514) (a few crude repairs, narrow strips of paper pasted over portions of the text on ff.36r, 87r, and 391-392).

Binding:
Contemporary blind-stamped Russian binding of calf over wooden boards, sewn on 4 bands, 3 brass cornerpieces on upper cover (upper-left cornerpiece missing), fittings and central medallion showing St George facing to the right (rebacked, lower cover 19th century, lacking clasps). Fitted box.

Provenance:
(1) Anton Fedorovich Okunov, Kaluga merchant, 1825.

(2) P. Shepochkin, from 1825. Inscription at the foot of f.1 dated 29 November 1825 and signed by P. Shepochkin, recording that 'the manuscript was bought for 100 roubles from the Kaluga merchant Anton Fedorovich Okunov.'

(3) Paul M. Fekula (1905-1982): his MS 651, published in Matejic, 1983 and Keenan, 1988. His sale at Sotheby's, Russian Manuscripts from the Fourteenth to the Nineteenth Century From the Paul M. Fekula Collection, 29 November 1990, lot 78, for £57,200 to:

(4) The Schøyen Collection, MS 708.

Contents:
Introduction, lacking the beginning, ff.1-8; the Miracles of Saints Peter and Paul, ff.8v-9; Table of Contents, ff.9-11; List of St Paul's travels and a description of his death in Rome, f.11; On St Paul's citizenship, ff.11v-13; Table of Contents for all Epistles, ff.13-20v; Ten Commandments f.20v; List of Concepts discussed in the Interpretation of the Epistles f.21; blank f.22; Frontispiece f.22v; Interpretation of the Acts of the Apostles by St John Chrysostom and the following Church Fathers: Athanasios of Alexandria; Severianius of Gabala (of Antioch); Gregory of Nyssa; Camos; Didimus; Cyril of Alexandria; Ireneus 'Lugdiskij' [sic]; Presbyter Isihios; Isidor; Epiphanios of Cyprus; Presbyter Amonius; Eusebius of Emessa ('Amesiskij'), ff.23-79; blank f.79v; Interpretation of James's General Epistle by John Chrysostom, Cyril of Alexandria, Basil the Great, Maximos, ff.80-90; Interpretation of the First General Epistle of St Peter with Interpretations by John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, Amonius, Athanasios the Great, Severianos of Gabala, ff.90-101v; Second General Epistle of St Peter with Interpretations by John Chrysostom, Cyril of Alexandria, Ephraim of Syria, Eusebius of Emessa, Athanasios the Great, ff.102-106v; First General Epistle of St John with Interpretations by John Chrysostom and Cyril of Alexandria ff.107-108; blank f.108v; Interpretations of the First General Epistle of St John by Severianos of Gabala and Maximos the Confessor ff.109-118; Second General Epistle by St John with Interpretations by John Chrysostom f.118-118v; Third General Epistle by St John with Interpretations by John Chrysostom ff.118v-119v; General Epistle of St Jude with Interpretations by John Chrysostom ff.120-123v; blank f.124v; Introduction to St Paul's Epistles ff.124-129; Epistle to the Romans with Interpretations by Cyril of Alexandria, Theodorit, Genadios, Isidor, John Chrysostom, Severianos of Gabala, Oekumenios, Basil the Great, ff.129-171; Introduction to the First Epistle to the Corinthians, f.171-171v; First Epistle to the Corinthians with Interpretations by Theodor, Severianos, Oekumenios, Cyril of Alexandria, John Chrysostom, Genadios, Gregory, Methodios, ff.171v-216; Introduction to the Second Epistle to the Corinthians f.216v; Second Epistle to the Corinthians with Interpretations with Interpretations by Theodorit, Theodor, Oekumenios, John Chrysostom, ff.217-249; Introduction to the Epistle of the Galatians f.249-249v; Epistle to the Galatians with Interpretations by Severianos, Oekumenios, Theodor, Genadios, Theodorit, John Chrysostom, ff.250-267; Epistle to the Ephesians with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.267v-284v; Introduction to the Epistle to the Philippians ff.284v-285; Epistle to the Philippians with Interpretations by Oekumenios, ff.285-298; Introduction to the Epistle to the Colossians f.298-298v; Epistle to the Colossians with Interpretations by John Chrysostom, Oekumenios, Theodor, ff.298v-308v; Introduction to the Epistle to the Thessalonians ff.308v-309; Epistle to the Thessalonians with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.309-320; Introduction to the Second Epistle to the Thessalonians f.320; Second Epistle to the Thessalonians with Interpretations by Theodor, Severianos, Oekumenios, ff.320v-326; Introduction to the Epistle of the Hebrews ff.326-327; Epistle to the Hebrews with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.327v-362v; Introduction to the Epistle to Timothy ff.362v-363; the Epistle to Timothy with Interpretations by Oekumenios ff.363v-376v; Introduction to the Second Epistle of Timothy ff.376v-377; Second Epistle to Timothy with Interpretations by Theodor and Oekumenios ff.377-386v; Introduction to the Epistle to Titus f.386v; the Epistle to Titus ff.387-391; Introduction to the Epistle to Philemon f.391-391v; the Epistle to Philemon with Interpretations ff.391v-393v.

Illumination:
The Apostol boasts some fine miniatures throughout, notably the full-page illuminated medallions of Christ, the Virgin and Apostles on f.22v. The iconographic figures, depicted waist-up, sit within medallion-like frames of intertwining vines. There are five rows of holy figures identified (top to bottom and left to right): row 1 - Virgin Mary; Christ; St John the Baptist; row 2 - St John the Theologian; St Peter; St Paul; St Matthew; row 3 - St Thomas; St Andrew; St James Alpheus; St Phillip; row 4 - St James; St Simon; St Bartholomew; St Jude; row 5 - Moses; David; Prophet Elijah. Each figure is identified by inscriptions in the gold-leaf haloes. The faces of St James Alpheus and St Phillip have been damaged (paint peeled off). The beautiful iconography echoes the frescoes of the Cathedral of the Annunciation in the Kremlin in Moscow.

There are additionally 4, strikingly intricate headpieces of floral motifs on highly-burnished, gold backgrounds in the neo-Byzantine style. These are on ff.80, 107, 124, 129, each also including large, illuminated initials in the same, detailed scrolling motifs. Ornamentations here are brightly coloured with blues, pinks, oranges, yellows and green.

In a different style but similar ornamentation, a large headpiece in watercolour on f.23. There are here black-ink floral motifs overlaid onto a blue and white checkerboard geometric pattern, surrounded by a multicoloured crenelated border, producing a very different effect to the other gold-backed motifs. The large initial on f.23 continues this geometric/floral interplay, although it is here left in black and white, creating a sharp contrast against the headpiece above. There is a final, narrow, one-column-wide headpiece drawn in black ink and coloured green, again of floral ornamentation, on f.327v.

Provenance
Keenan, E.L., ed., The Paul M. Fekula Collection: a Catalogue, New York, 1988, Fekula MS.651.

Matejic, M., Slavic Manuscripts from the Fekula Collection: a Description, Columbus, Ohio: Kosovo Publishing Company, 1983, F-XXVIII.

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Sale price
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Time, Location
11 Jun 2024
UK, London
Auction House
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