The Burgundian Period

The luxurious Dukes of Burgundy—Possessions of the House of Burgundy -The Burgundian Court—Household of Philip the Good— the Feast of the Pheasant—the Duke of Burgundy at the Coronation of Louis XI—Arias Tapestries--Sumptuous Dressoirs and their Adornments -Celebrations in honour of the Knights of the Golden Fleece- -Luxury of Charles the Bold—Charles the Bold at Trêves—Furnishings of the Abbey of Saint-Maxiinin—Charles the Bold's Second Marriage- -Furnishings of the Banqueting Hall at Bruges- Descriptions by Olivier de la Marche—Aliènor of Poitier's Descriotions of the Furniture of the Duchess oi Burgundy's Apartments—Rich Dressoirs—the Drageoir and its Etiquette- -the Etiquette of the Escarbeau—Philip the Bold's . -tisans—Flemish Carving-the Fnrme or Banc- -Burçunaian Wo.-kmandhip- Ecclesiastical Work -Noted Carvers—Furniture of the Period—the " Golden Age of Tapestry "—Embroideries — Tapestry weavers of the Low Countries—Introduction of Italian Cartoons -Goldsmiths' Work—Furniture of the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries.

THE most luxurious prince of his age was Ph lip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy (13 42 -1404), son of John the Good, Kmg of France. By ts al ances, conquests and inheritances, the House of Burgundy attained such wealth and power as to overshadow the French throne itself. Under hife grandson, Philip the Good, the Burgundian Court displayed greater splendour than any other 11 Europe. The reigrmg dukes were powerful protectors of the arts. Their mmense re sources, drawn from the Flemish hives of industry, enabled them to indulge their taste for architecture, painting, sculpture, lluminated books, tapestry, goldsmiths' work and sumptuous furniture. They were also insatiable collectors of everything that was curous and rare. Any able artist, sculptor, architect, goldsmith, or image-maker, driven from home by the perpetual civil wars in England, France and Italy, was sure of refuge and employment at the Court of Burgundy. Thus, for a century and a half, the Low Countries were the most important art centre of Europe. D"on anil Brussels, the capitals of the Burgnndian dominions, were Meccas of Mediaeval Art; and Tournay, Bruges, Ypres, Ghent, Dinart, and many other industrial centres swarmed with craftsmen who produced all that was luxurious and beautiful for domestic comfort and decoration.

The house of Burgundy constantly increased its possessions. Some idea of its power is g; ned by a list of Philip the Good's titles. He was Duke of Burgundy, of Brabant, of Lothier, of Luxembourg; Count of Flanders, of Artois and of Burgundy; Palatine of Hainault „ of Holland, of Zeeland, of Namur and of Charolais ; Marquis of the Holy Empire; and Lord of Friesland, of Salins and of Mechlin.

The brilliance and luxury of the Burgumiian Court are attested by many chroniclers. The pages of Phiip de Comines, Olivier de la Marehe, and others are full of descriptions of feasts and pageantry from which we can form an idea of the luxurious appdntments of the palatial dwellings of the day. Foreigners also, who

were well acquainted with other European courts, bore witness to Burgundian splendour. One of these, Leo von Rozxnital, who visited the courts of Europe in 1465-7, saw the Duke of Burgundy's treasures. His suite was overpowered by the magnificence. The scribe, Tetzel, tried to enumerate and describe these marvels, but gave up the task in despair, noting "there was nothing like it in the whole world and that it far exceeded the Venetian collection."

The son and successor of John the Fearless, Philip the Good (1396-1467), was even more luxurious than his grandfather, Philip the Bold. His Court was unequalled in Europe, and when in attendance upon the King of France, his retinue completely eclipsed royalty. His palaces in Brussels, Dijon and Paris were sumptuously furnished; and his collections of tapestries, silver, gold, jewels, embroideries, illuminated manuscripts and pxinted books excited the admiration of the travellers and chroniclers of the age. His household, composed of four great divisions—the Panetrie, Echansonnerie, Cuisine and it curie, with subordinate departments, was subject to the strictest rules of etiquette and was adopted as a model by the Spar ish sovereigns of the sixteenth, century. The ceremonies of the levee, procession, council, audience, service of spices, banquet, etc., were selected as precedents for Vienna and Paris, as well as Madrid.

One of Philip*« most celebrated banquets—the Feast ol the Pheasant, which took place at Lille in 1.454—will serve to give a glimpse of the Court entertainments in his day. The large hall was hung with tapestry representing the labours of Hercules, and was encircled by

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five tiers of galleries for the spectators. The dressoir of enormous size was adorned with gold and silver vessels, and on either side of it stood a column. One of these had attached to it a carved female figure from whose breast flowed a fountain of hippocras ; and to the other was fastened by an iron phai» a live lion from Africa, a great curiosity in those days. The three great tables were covered with the most ingenious productions of the cooks, confectioners and machinists. " On a raised platform at the head of the first table sat the Duke, lie was arrayed with his accustomed splendour — his dress of black velvet serving as a dark ground that heightened the brilliancy of the precious stones, valued at a million of gold crowns, with which it was profusely decked. Among the guests were a numerous body of knights who had passed the morning in the t;iting-field, and fair Flemish dames whose flaunting beauty had inspired these martial sports. Each course was composed of forty-four dishes, which were placed on chariots painted in gold and azure, ani were moved along the tables by concealed machinery." As soon as the company was seated, the bells began to peal from the steeple ot a huge pastry church with stained windows that concealed an organ and chcur of singers, and three little choristers issued from ihe edifice and sang "a very sweet chanson." Twenty-eight musicians hidden in a mammoth pie performed on var, >us instruments, and the fine viands and wines were circulated. After the exhibition of entremets, the pheasant was brought in, the Crusade proclaimed aga ist the Sultan, and the vows registered.

Another instance oi the magnificent display of this Duke occurred when he accompanied Louis XI to Rheims for the ceremony of his coronat >n in 1461. This is described as follows by the Duke of Burgundy's chronicler, Georges Chastelain ("1403- 75) :

" Their journey resembled a triumphal procession, in which the Duke of Burgundy appeared as it he were the conqueror and I.ouis the illustrious captive. Tne trappings of the horses, that reached to the ground, were of velvet ami silk, covered with precious stones and ornaments of gold, embroidered with the Burgundian arms and decorated with silver bells, the jingling of which was very agreeable and solacing. A great number of wagons draped with cloth of gold and hung with banners carried the Duke's tapestries, furniture, silver and other table service and the utensils for the kitchen. These were followed by herds of fat oxen and flocks of sheep intended for food during the progress of the^Duke and his suite. Philip and his son, v th the principal nobles, appeared in their greatest magnificence, and were preceded and followed by pages, archers and men-at-arms, all in gorgeous costumes and blazing v~th jewels."

Their entrance into Rheirns was regarded as the most superb spectacle France had ever witnessed. Louis was crowned by the Duke of Burgundy, " the dean of the peers of France " ; and at the banquet that followed the coronation, the Duke of Burgundy was still the most conspicuous figure. The same chronicler continues :

" Though the King sat at the head of the table,

arrayed in regal attire, with the crown upon his head, he was still the guest of his fair uncle, whose cooks had provided the dinner, whose plate was displayed upon the sideboards and whose servants waited upon the company. In the midst of the repast, the doors were opened and porters entered bea mg a costly present for the new sovereign. Such of the guests as were strangers, except from hearsay, to the splendours of the Burgundian Court, gazed in astonishment at the images, goblets, miniature ships, and other articles of the linest gold and rarest workmanship—amoun nig in value to more than two hundred thousand crowns--which Philip presented to the King as an emphatic token of his loyalty and good-will."

Chastelain's note of the great number of wagons that were required to carry the Duke's tapestries in his journevings is of interest. The products of the Flemish looms were highly prized by the Burgundian dukes, and great encouragement was given by them to the best work of this nature.

It was from Arras that they chiefly filled their superb store-chambers in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The \rras looms had become famous, far and wide ; for, when Philip the Bold's son was taken prisoner at the Battle of Nicopolis (1396), the Sultan Bajazet said to the Duke of Burgundy's envoy that he " would be pleased to see some high-warp tapestries worked in Arras and Picardy," and that " they should represent good old stoiies." Philip thereupon sent two pack-horses laden with " high-warp cloths, collected and made at Arras, the finest that could be found on this

side of the mountains." The set he chose was The History of Alexander. In 1374, there's an entry in the accounts of the Duke of Burgundy " to Colin Bataille, tapissier et bourgeois de Paris,'' for six pieces of tapestry " of Arras workmanship/' with the arms of M. the Duke of Burgundy k to cover the pack-horses of Monseigneur when he travelled." The favourite subjects produced at Arras were romances of chivalry, such as Charlemagne and his Peers, Doon de la Roche, Baudouin de Sebourg, Percival the Gaul, Renaud de Montauban, Aubri de Bourguinon, etc. ; stories from Greek mythology, such as Thesous, Jason, Paris and Helen, The Destruction of Troy, etc.; and contemporary events such as The Battle of Rosbeck, The Battle of Lilge, History of Bcrtrand Duguesclin, The Jousts of St. Denis and The Battle of the Thirty. Hunting scenes and pictures of cavaliers and ladies in everyday life were popular, and stories from the Old and New Testaments, l ives of the Saints and Acts of the Martyrs. Allegory also makes its appearance as a subject for cartoons, such as the Virtues and Vices. the Seven Cardinal Sins, the Tree of Life, Fountain of Youth, etc.

When Philip the Good married Isabella of Portugal, Le Fevre de Saint Remy notes that on each side of the hall there was a dressoir twenty feet long on a platform tw o feet high and well enclosed by barriers three feet high, on the side of which was a little gate for entrance and exit; and both dressoirs had live stages, each two and a half feet high. The three upper tiers were covered and loaded with vessels of fine gold ; and the two lower ones with many great vessels of silver gilt.

Again Chastelain, describing a banquet given by Philip the Good, says : " The Duke had made in the great hall a dressoir constricted in the form of a round castle, ten steps (degres) n height filled with gold plate in pots and flagons of various kinds, amounting to b,ooo marks (argent dorf) not counting those on the top which were of fine gold set with rich gems of marvellous price."

The above gives some; '.dea of the mportance of the dressoir, which undoubtedly was the most showy piece of furniture in hall or chamber. It often assumed enormous proportions on great state occasions.

A very ornate one of this period is reproduced in Plate III. It is beautifully carved with Gothic tracery, leaf-work, Biblical scenes and personages, and coats-ot-arms. It '.s nteresting to compare this with the simple form of P^te IV, which has no intermediate shelf for the display of plate ; but Is also 'nteresting on account of its carving. This, with its drawers and cupboards, was a most serviceable piece of furniture and must have producc-d a fine effect n a room when the cupboard head was decked with plate.

The great celebrations in honour of the Knights of the Golden Fleece also offered occasion for the display of the greatest splendour at the Burgundiai: Court. A veritable army of painters, sculptors, illuminators, carvers and machinists was employed to design and prepare the entremets exhi lited during the banquets. Among the huchiers who worked for the banquet given to the Knights of the Golden Fleece in 1453 were Guil-laurne Maussel and his son, Jacob Haquinet Penon,

Plate IV.—Credence {Fifteenth Century). ciuny museum, paris.

Jehan Daret and his two companions, and Jehan de Westerhem.

When Charles the Bold (1433-1477) succeeded his lather, Philip the Good, in 1467, he maintained his Court with the same state, ceremony and luxury. His daily life was surrounded bv pomp and pund dious etiauette. He dined in state every day and was always attended by a retinue of knights, equerries and pages. When he went to war, he always carried rich silver and tapestries, as well as costly viands and wines. The Swiss gained rich spoils after the Battle of Nancy and carried away among other articles of value tapestries which car1 be seen to-day in Nancy, Berne and other cities.

The meeting of Charles the Bold with the Emperor at Trêves, ir 1473, occasioned a great display of magnificence. The far-famed luxury of the Burgundian Court was well exhibited dun. ig the eight weeks that the two Courts spent in the Rhenish city. Charles gave the most superb entertainments. The Abbey of Saint Maximin, which the Duke chose for his temporary residence, was fitted up for the occasion with furriture, tapestries, richly embroidered stuffs, gold and silver from his palaces. The great hall was hung with tapestries, and the chai of state for the Ernperor, the canopy and the seats for the other great personages on the dais were covered with rich embroidered hangings. The arms of Burgundy, the insignia of the Golden Fleece and other heraldic decorations were conspicuously displaved. Many of the most valuable ecclesiastical treasures collected by Philip the Good, such as silver images, candlesticks, and crucifixes, and reliquaries of gold

studded with gems were brought to adorn the altars and shrines of the church ; and, in the refectory, an immense dyessoir, twenty feet broad, reached from floor to ceiling, its ten receding shelves gleaming with gold and silver plate.

diaries the Bold's second marriage iif 1468 to Margaret of York furbished another occasion for the display of his wealth and magnificence. John Paston, who went to 1 Bruges to attend the wedding, was simply dazzled and overwhelmed by what he saw. Writing to his mother, he says : " As for the Dwkys coort, as of lords, ladys and gentylwornen, knyts, sqwycrs and gentylmen, I herd never of non lyek it, save King Artourys cort. And by my trowthe, I have no wyt nor remembrans to wryte to you, half the worchep that is her."

Passing by the descriptions of i ousts and other enterta nrnents, we may note that workmen—painters* decorators and machinists- -had been engaged for man}' months to adorn Bruges fittingly for the nuptial fes-thities. The streets were hung writh tapestries and cloth of gold, tr imphal arches were erected at intervals, and at different points along the road the bride was diverted with I Histories," the joint productions of dramatist, decorator, painter and machinist. The front of the palace was covered with paintings of heraldic devices and magnificent decorations, and behind the palace, in the tennis court, a new banqueting hall was erected for the occasion. This "braldi lg was a hundred and forty feet long, seventy feet wide and more than sixty feet high. The walls were hung with some of the Duke's most famous tapestries, one set of which repre-

sented Jason's quest of the Golden Fleece; the ceiling was painted, anil at every possible place banners and heraldic, devices were hung. An enormous dressoir in the centre of tne hall displayed on its tiers of shelves an overwhelming exhibition of gold and silver treasures glittering with gems. The tables were arranged lengthwise on either side of the hall, except one reserved for the Duke's family and the guests of highest rank. This table was placed on a raised platform at the upper end of the hall, and over it was spread a canopy with curtains hanging to the floor, so as to present the appearance of an open pavilion. The chroniclers of the day note that " the hall was lighted by chandeliers in the form of castles surrounded by forests and mountains, with revolving paths on which serpents, dragons and other monstrous animals seemed to roam in search of prey, spouting forth jets of flame that were reflected m huge mirrors, so airanged as to catch and multiply the rays. The dishes containing the piincipal meats represented vessels, seven feet long, completely rigged, the masts and cordage gilt, the sails and streamers of silk, each floating 1 a silver lake between shores of verdure and enamelled rocks, and attended by a fleet of boats laden with lemons, olives and condiments. There were thirty of these vessels and as many huge pasties in a castellated shape with banners waving from their battlements and towers ; besides tents and pavilions for the fruit, jelly dishes of crystal supported by figures of the same, material dispensing streams of lavender and rosewater, and an immense profusion of gold and silver plate."

The festivities continued for more than a week. Every day a tournament, banquet and dance took place. At one of the banquets, the decorations were so wonderful that the guests marched around the tables to examine the artistic creations. These consisted of gardens made of a mosaic-work of rare and highly polished stones, inlaid with silver, and surrounded with hedges made of gold. In the centre of each enclosure was placed a tree of gold with branches, foliage and frr '_t exquisitely enamelled in imita^.on of orange, pear, apple and other trees. Fountains of variously perfumed waters rendered the air deliriously fragrant.

Olivier de la Marclie's description of the banqueting hall is as follows :

" In this hall were three tables, one of which was placed across the ends of the others. This table, higher than the others, stood upon a platform. The other two tables were placed on the two sides of the hall, occupying the whole length j they were very long and very handsome, and in the centre of the said hall a high and rich buffet in the form of a lozenge was placed. The top of the said buffet was enclosed with a balustrade, and the whole was covered wHIi tapestries and hung with the arms of Monsieur le Due; and above rose the steps and degrees on w hich were displayed many vessels, the largest on the lowest, and the richest and smallest on the top shelves; that is to say, on the lowest shelves stood the silver-gilt vessels, and above them the vessels of gold garnished with precious stones, of wl ich he had a great number. On the top of the bulfet stood a rich jewelled cup, and on each of the four corners large

and entire unicorns' horns, and these were very large and very handsome. These vessels of parade were not to be used, for there were other vessels, pots and cups of silver in the hall and chambers intended for service."

Turning now from the buffet d'apparat, he describes the " buffet d'usage." Regarding the service, " The new Duchess was served by the cup-bearer, the carver and the pantler, all English, all knights and men of noble birth, and the usher of the hall cried : ( Knights to the meat ! ' And then they all went to the buffet to fetch the meat, and all the relations of Monsieur and all the knights marched around the buffet n the order of the great house two by two after the trumpeters before the meat."

We sometimes get a glimpse of a luxurious chamber of the Burgund;an Court from Alienor of Poitiers, who wrote Les Honneurs de la Court. Her testimony is trustworthy, for her mother was maid of honour to the Duchess Isabella, third wife of Ph'lip the Good ; and, therefore, she undoubtedly witnessed what she describes. She tells us that the chamber of Isabella of Bourbon, wife of Charles the Bold, Count of Charolais, was very laige and contained two beds, separated by a space four or five feet wide. A large del, or canopy, of green damask covered both beds; and from it hung curta; is of satin which moved on rings, and could completely screen the beds when desired. The lambrequin of the canopy and the curtains were fringed with green silk. On each bed was an ermine counterpane, lined with very line \iolet cloth. The chronicler expressly notes that the black tails were left on the fur. " La grancte

chambre " from which the " Chambre de Madame " was entered, called the " chambre de parement," contained one large bed in crimson sa+in. The ciel was very richly embroidered with a great gold sun, and " this tapestry was called la chambre d' Utrecht, for it is believed that Utrecht gave t to the Duke Philip," writes Alienor, who adds : '' The curtains of crimson samite are looped up like those of a bed in which nobody sleeps." The hangings of the wall were of red silk. At one end of the holster was a great square cushion of gold and crimson, and by the side of the bed a " large shaggy carpet."

In each of these rooms there was a handsome dressoir; and our scribe continues : "In the chamber of the Countess de Cliarolais there was a large dressoir of four beautiful shelves, the whole length of the dressoir, each covered with a cloth ; the said dressoir and the shelves filled with vessels of crystal garnished with gold and precious stones, and some of fine gold ; for all the richest vessels of Duke Phi lp were there—pots, cups and beaKers of fine gold, and other vessels that are never exliibited except on state occasions. Among other vessels there were on the said dressoir three drageoirs of gold and precious stones, one of which is estimated at 14,000 ecus, and another at 30,000 ecus. On the back of the dressoir was hung a dnrsct (dorsal) of cloth of gold and crimson, bordered with black velvet, and on the black velvet was delicately embroidered the device of Duke Philip, which was a gun. . . .

' Item, on the dressoir wnich was in the chamber of the said lady, there were always two silver candlc-

sticks which they called at Court mesticrs,1 m which two 1 ghts were always burning, for it was fifteen days before the windows of her room were allowed to be opened. Near the dressoir ih a corner was a little low table containing the cups and saucers in which something to drink was served to those ladies who came to see Madame, after the}' had been offered a dragée 2 ; but the drageoir stood upon the dressoir."

In the " chambre de parade " there stood a verv large dressoir, ornamented with superb pieces of gold and silver.

It was the custom for both lords and ladies to receive their acqu; intances informally in the " chambre de parade," while the inner room was reserved for their intimate friends. On the occasion of a biith, these two rooms were as superbly furnished as the house could aiïord. Tlie richest cloths and tapestries were brought out, and the dressoir was adorned with articles of gold and silver that were only placed on view on important occasions.

When Mary of Burgundy was born, the same authority informs us that Isabella of Bourbon's room was very richly furnished ; and in honour of Mary of Burgundy, the (laughter and heir of Charles the Bold, there were five shelves upon the dressoir, a privilege reserved for queens only.

The drageoir was a -verv important article. It contained the various " êpices de chambre," generally called dragee, and meaning all k nds of sugar plums and confitures, conserves, sugared rose leaves {sucré rosat), etc.

1 Night candle's. 1 Bonbons.

A writer in the sixteenth century mentions " Curious drawees of all colours, some in the shape of beasts, others fashioned like men, women and b rds." Sometimes the bonbons were taken with the. fingers, as may be seen in one of the fine set of tapestries in the Clunv Museum, representng The Ladv and the Unicorn. An attendant kneeling presents the drageoir to the lady, who is standing with a pet bird on her left arm, and she is about to dip the fingers of her right hand into the drageoir to get something to delight the b "d.

The drageoir was generally handed to the guests after dinner, and made its appearance at all ceremonial feasts. Froissart, describing the reception to the English knights sent bv the King of England in 1390 to negotiate peace in France, says they were entertained at the Louvre, and " when they had dined they retired to the King's chamber, and there they were served with wine and sweetmeats n large drageoirs of silver and gold." It was always handed with solemnity, and subject to strict etiquette. The Constable of France had the honour of presenting the drageoir to the King. At the Duke 01 Burgundy's Court, according to Olivier de la Marche, the steward handed the drageoir to the first chamberlain, who handed t to the most important personage present, who then presented it to the pr ice or duke. When the latter had helped himself, the honoured guest returned it to the chamberlain, who gave it to the steward.

Alienor also nforms us : " When one of the princes had served Monsieur and Madame (the Duke and Duchess of Burgundy) w^.th sweetmeats, one of the most important personages, for example, the first chamberlain, oc

Madame's chevalier d'honneur, took the drageoir and served the Duke's nephews and nieces; and after they had been served it was handed to everybody."

The drageoir was one of the most valued and popular presents during the Middle Ages. In the nventory of Margaret of Austria occurs a beautiful and large silver-gilt drageoir, fluted, presented to Madame by the gentlemen of the town of Brussels for her New Year, 1520."

Alienor de Poitiers also says there should always be in the lady's rooir a chaii with a back near the bolster of the bed; and that this chair should be covered with silk or velvet, for " velvet is the most honourable covering, no matter what colour" ; and V near the chaL" should be placed a little bench, or stool, covered with a banquier and some silk cushions for visitors to sit on when they call to see the :nvalid."

The little stool or bench, called escarbeau, was very low and without back or arms, bometimes 't was triangular in form. Sometimes it served for a low-table. Rich people oiten threw over these bancs a piece of tapestry or silk, known as banquiers.

The memory of the vast maioi.ty of the artists of this period has perished, but a few names have survived.

When Philip the Bold bu it a second St. Denis for his race at Dijon (1390), his art and craftsmen were all drawn from the Low Countries. Nicholas Sluter was in charge ; and under his direct'on the Chartreuse became a veritable Flemish museum of carving. He sent tor his nephew, Nicholas van de Werve, and paid him from six to seven shillings per week. Other Flemish workmen in Iiis employ were : Jehan Malouel, Henne-quin van Prindale, Roger Westerhen, Peter Liukerk, John Hülst, John de Marville, John de Beauinetz and Williken Smout. The coloured windows were made at Mechlin, by Henry Glusomack. The oak retables with their numerous figurines, were the work of.-a Flemish carver named Baerze of Termonde.

In fact, the only Frenchman who hail any part in the work was Berthelot Heliot, " varlet de*\Monscigneur," an ivory-carver.

The two retables carved by Jacques de Baerze i.i 1391 for the Chartreuse are now in the Dron Museum. One was made for the Duke's chapel at Termonde (Dendermonde), and the other for the Abbey of Bil-loche, near Ghent. These were painted and gilded by Jehan Malouel and Melchior Broederlam, who had been engaged by the Counts of Flanders 1; and worked in Hesdin and Ypres before becoming court-painters to Philip the Bold.

The same Museum contains three cylindrical boxes of beautiful workmanship of the same period. Two of these are ornamented with arabesques and birds painted and gilded ; the third is decorated with polychromatic bas-reliefs, and a round boss representing scenes from the New Testament. These boxes are supposed to have belonged to the toilet-tables of the Duchesses of Burgundy. Two retables, ornamented with bas-reliefs n the Cluny Museum are called " oratoires des Duchesscs de Bourgogne." These were bought from Berthelot Heliot, " valet de chambre " of Philip the Bold ; and rt is thought that they came from Italy.

Another fine piece of Flemish wood-can ing is preserved in the old Salles des Gardes of the Palace in Dijon, where it forms a decoration of the cliimney-piece. This is a panel of carved wood, the last remnant of the choir-stalls in the ducal chapel. The centre of the panel was the hack of John the Fearless's seat. The upper part terminating in a pointed arch and bordered with festoons ornamented with foliage surrounds the Duke's shield, which is supported by two angels. The arms of eight dependent provinces are carved n the lower part of the panel, enlaced in a trellis of mould:ngs decorated with chicory leaves, and further enriched by four angels playing various nstmments.

The Dijon Museum contains another splendid piece of wood-can ing of the same date i t the seat or forme for the accommodation of the priest, deacon, and sub-deacon of the Chartreuse. This was carved in 1395 by John of Liège, a carpenter, for the sum of two hundred and fifty francs, to which another hundred were afterwards added in recogr tion of the excellence of the work.

The forme is a species of banc divided by arms into stalls like choir stalls. The forme always had a back which grew larger about the end of the twelfth century, and at a later date, it was surmounted by a dais The forme was always considered to be a seat of honour.

John de Marville set to work on the Duke's tomb in 1383, and in 1388 was succeeded by Claus Sluter, who also executed much important work. In the chapel of the Chartreuse at Dijon, he represented Phihp the Bold and the Duchess Margaret kneeling at the feet

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of St. Anthony and St. Anne. In 1404, ne retired to the monastery of St Etienne de Diion, and was succeeded in his post of " imagier and valet de chambre " to the Duke oi Burgundy by his nephew Claes, or Nicholas, van de Werve.

In 1393, Philip the Bold sent his painter, Jehan de Beaumet/., and his sculptor, Claus Sluter, to see the works that his brother, the Duke of Berry, had had André Beauneveu make at the Château Mehun-sur-Yèvre.

Burgundy was especially famous among French provinces for its wood-work. Many masterpieces were created by the Dukes of Burgundy. There were, however, other patrons of this art, the great Abbeys of Clairvaux, Citeaux, Cluny and Vézélay. Numerous schools of workmen gathered around these monasteries, faithfully preserving the traditions of the master-sculptors of the past and bequeathing them to their successors of the Renaissance. A great deal of theii most ornate and skilful work was naturally upon the choir-stalls. Those in the Abbey of Charlieu wh figures of saints painted on wooden panels (later in the Church of Charolais), and the old Abbaye de Montréal (Yonne) are especially notable.

The Brabant artists perhaps manifested their fertility most in wood-carving. Flanders, during the fifteenth century, produced an enormous number of retables, choir-stalls, pulpits, chairs, tables, communion benches, and similar work. The energies of the skilful wood-carvers found vent in civil as well as ecclesiastical work. The public buildings of the prosperous

cities contained many beautiful products of the chisel.

The ducal expense accounts that have come down to us contain many entries of payments» made to various Flemish joiners and cabinet-makers ('huchiers-menuisiers). When the great Halles of Brussels had to be rebuilt m 1409, the following experts wTere employed to do the work : Louis Van den Broec, Pierre de Staete, Henry and Godefroy den Molensleyer, Adam Steenberch, Henry van Duysbourg, Pierre van Berenberge, Henrv van Boegarden and John van den Gance. We find these names employed on other contemporary work. A few years later, Charles de Bruyn executed the wood-carving for the Louva 1 cathedral. In 1409, John Bulteel of Courtray was commissioned to carve the choir-stalls for the chapel of the oratory of Ghent. Peter van Oost received the order for the ceiling of the town hall of Bruges; and in 1449, W. Ards was carving that of the town hall of Mechlin. In 1470, the great altar-piece of Savnt Waltrude n Herentais was executed by B. van Raephorst. In 1459, the beautiful stalls of the Abbey of Tournay, which were unfortunately destroyed by fire in the following century, were carved by Jan Vlaenders.

A noted carver of this age was Jehan Maluel Henne-quin van Pr idale, who, as we have seen, was in the employ of the Duke of Burgundy. The hands only of a Magdalen that he made (1309- 1400^ are in the Dijon Museum. Tin's statue was remarkable as having a copper 1 imbus, or diadem.

The fame of the Flemish wood-carvers spread far

5i beyond the confines of their own provinces, and their services were eagerly sought in England, France, Spam, Italy and even German}*.

Although German wood-carvers were plentiful, John Floreins was employed on the choii -stalls of the Cologne Cathedral. In 1465, Flemish huchicrs were called upon to carve the stalls of Rouen. Italy attracted many artists whose work still attests their ability. Among the innumerable workers in intag] ¡0 and marquetry of that period, we find the names of almost as many Northerners as native Italians. The Church of St. Georgio Maggiore, Venice, contains forty-eight stalls, adorned by Van der Rrulh of Antwerp with carved bas-reliefs illustrating the life of St. Benedict. The armoires of the sacristy of Ferrara bear the signatures of Henry and William, two Flemish carvers; and many other examples might be cited.

In Spa'n, the entire Spanish school, unt;l Berruguete brought the New Art from Michelangelo's studio in 1520, was led by Philippe Vigarny, a Burgundian, who was considered the best wood-carver in Spa: 1. His style was frankly Gothic.

The influence of the Flemish and French was so great in Spam at this time, that Juan de Arphe severely reprimands his fellow-workers, who never cease copying the " papelas y estampas flamencas y francesas."

There was not a prosperous city in the Netherlands whose public and private buddings were not embellished with the products of the great artists 'n wood-carving. The great masters of Bruges were Guyot de Beaugrant,

L. Glosencamp, Roger de Smet and André Rasch, sculptor? and carpenters who executed the chimney-piece in the Palais du Franc in Bruges after the designs of Lancelot Blondeel.

One of the most characteristic specimens of Flemish carpentry-work of the fifteenth century is the oak pew richly carved in the Gothic style (1474), belonging to the Van der Gruuthuuse family i 1 Notre Dame of Bruges that is connected by a passage with the Gruuthuuse Mansion, built in (1405 70).

It is important to keep constantly in mind the fact that at tliis period architects, sculptors, painters and goldsmiths did not confine themselves to one particular field of labour. Sculptors worked both in wood and stone in both civil and religious buil lings, and the best talent was employed ¡equally on retables, choir-stalls, pulpits, bishops' thrones, armoires, dressoirs, chests and seats. The Duke's accounts show many entries of payments for elaborate furniture. Two examples will suifice : " June 20, 1399 : From the Duke of Burgundy to Sandom, huchier, living ;n Arras, for a dressoir, with lock and keys, which was placed in the chamber of our very dear and much-loved son Anthoyne, xxxii sols pariis " ; and again, " To Pierre Turquet, huchier, living in the said town of Arras, for a bench, a table, a pair of trestles, and for a dressoir with lock and key for our chamber in our abode in the said place, for goods supplied by him four livres parus."

The fifteenth century has been called the " Golden Age of Tapestry." Not only were the halls and chambers of rich lords hung with " noble auncyent stories," woven

in silk and wool of the most gorgeous hues and enlivened with shining threads of gold, but the storerooms were filled with sets that were brought forth to decorate the outsides as well as the interiors of houses on the occasion of some great festival, marriage, tournament, or return of a conqueror from the wars. Wealthy princes often took valuable sets to war to decorate their tents. Charles the Bold, for example, nad with him some of his richest treasures, wl Lch became the trophies of his Swiss conquerors and are now in Berne.

Owing to her wars, the industries of France had declined, and among them her tapestry. Flanders now, particularly under the patronage of the rich and powerful Dukes of Burgundy, enjoyed the greatest prosperity. Flanders became the centre of the manufacture of tapestry ; and Arras, Brussels and Bruges produced works tha* have never been surpassed.

Every subject lent itself to reproduction. The inventory of a princely but small collector in 1406-7 mentions : A Stag in a Wood, Story of Pyramus and Ihisbe, History of the God vj Love, History of King Pepin, Hawking, A Lord and Lady playing at Chens, A Trapped Hare, Monkeys, Castles, Parrots, and Verdures. The latter shows how early the beautiful landscapes were valued. Throughout this century the tapestries show chai ning backgrounds of daisies, \iolets, strawberries, jessamine, primroses, bellflowers and lovely leaves often scattered 1 artistic disorder.

The influence of Memling and the Van Eycks and their school was msistent, although comparatively few of their j .ctures were translated into tapestry. One

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