The month of October shows the Louvre Palace as it looked in the 15th century when home to Charles V. The Palais du Louvre was originally a fortress built in the late 12th century under Philip ll. Remnants of the original fortress are still visible in the basement of the Louvre Museum today.
The blue tympanum shows the Libra zodiac signs for October, the scales in the first part of the month and Scorpio on the cusp. In the centre the chariot of the sun making it's yearly cycle through the heavens.
Autumn preparations are underway with a peasant on horseback tilling the ground. Note the stone on the harrow helping the teeth to penetrate deeper into the soil. He is followed by a further peasant sowing seeds in the furrows. The magpies and crows are enjoying the seeds as they are sown. The field beyond has already been sown and shows a scarecrow in the form of an archer. Looking carefully you can see some threads crossing the field which are hung with feathers to further deter the birds. Beyond is the River Seine, busy with people walking along the towpath, boatmen hailing business, and women washing clothes.
This month I thought that it might be interesting to learn a little more about the three brothers who painted the manuscript for their patron the Duc de Berry.
The Limburg brothers: Paul, Herman and Jean were born in Nimwegen in the Duchy of Guelders (present day Netherlands) and referred to as 'alemant' (German). The brothers were raised in an artistic family and began working in the arts at a young age. Paul was in the duke's employ by 1408, and his brothers no later than 1410; they all enjoyed a friendly relationship with their patron. After completing another manuscript the Belles Heures in 1412, they were chosen by the duke to paint the Très Riches Heures in 1413.
They laboured on the manuscript for two years, then all of them died during 1416. It is thought most likely that they caught the plague. The duke also died in that same year and Charles l, Duc de Savoie became the second patron of the work.
The month of September can be found here.