Between Folds / Illuminated Ornaments

Material: Illuminated ornaments selected from manuscripts of the Middle Ages, drawn and engraved by Henry Shaw, with descriptions by Sir Frederic Madden. London, William Pickering, 1833.
118 x 74 cm

As the first letter of a Medieval manuscript was embellished, ornamented in colour and design as a symbolic tribute to the text that would follow, Francisca celebrates text by amassing ornaments to the line of the letter ‘I”. Set by colour, they are the distinctive and emboldened hues of the Middle Ages: rich and regal cobalt blue; golden yellow of crowns and kingdom; rich alpine green of forbidden forests and English meadows; and rosebud red, ripened with love and war. All glow with the promise of tales and fables. Text bows before them in inverted folds, plain against the Celtic knots and twists, the leaves and flowers that pay homage to God’s green land and the jousting Knight in gleaming silver armour.