Kent Library Athenaeum Event--Female Book Owners in Flanders and the Low Countries: Identity Expressed Through Patronage
The proliferation of books of hours in Flanders and the Low Countries in the 14th and 15th centuries was due in part to the desire of the laity to pray in the manner of the clergy. Prayer became a solitary pursuit, the devout incorporated special prayers into their private devotional manuscripts. Religious manuscripts gave noblewomen a way to assert their individuality. Through patronage, women regained the individuality often stripped from them due to their conventional roles as noblewomen.
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