Shepherds Purse: manuscript - Hours of Mary of England

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The Hours of Mary of England were created in Tours ca. 1495-1500, and are currently located in the Bibliotheque Municipale, Lyons (MS 1558, fol. 33v). This scene is in the Annunciation to the Shepherds genre. Two shepherds wear Shepherds Purses (a third in the background has no visible pouch). Both are crescent-shaped and have an indented design along the lower edge (suggesting at the very least a seam there). The shepherd in the foreground on the left clearly wears the item slung over his shoulder, while the shepherd in the middle distance on the right wears an essentially identical item clearly worn around the waist. This picture is particularly interesting for showing this relationship of the two wearing styles. The item can be worn either way, although statistically the waist position is greatly preferred, and it is the waist position that forms the stylistic "gestalt" of the Shepherds Purse style.


Wieck, Roger S., William M. Voelkle & K. Michelle Hearne. 2000. The Hours of Henry VIII: A Renaissance Masterpiece by Jean Poyet.. fig. 18