The Urbino Bible, commissioned by Federico da Montefeltro, Duke of Urbino, in the late 15th Century, is a stunning work of art in its own right. The Urbino Bible is one of the rare examples of artistic collaboration in Florence during this time period.
This splendid manuscript, without a doubt a Florentine miniature masterpiece of the Renaissance, was commissioned by Federico at the working studio of Vespasiano da Bisticci, the renowned Florentine bookseller who was the primary provider of manuscripts for the Urbino library.
The original Urbino Bible is divided into two books. The volumes are particularly important for the richness of their illustrations. Hugo de Cominellis or Hugues de Comminellis de Mazieres, who was also responsible for other books commissioned by Federico, has been identified as the scribe of these volumes. The copy is a transcription of the canonic text of the Vulgate.
Scholars have identified the hands of a number of different artists who cooperated in decorating these volumes, among them, panel painters, fresco painters and miniature painters. The artists involved in these splendid decorations include Attavante, the Master of the Hamilton Xenophon, Francesco Rosselli, the brother of the most famous Cosimo, Francesco d’Antonio del Chierico, to whom we owe the greatest number of the illustrations, Biagio d’Antonio, Bartolomeo di Giovanni and David and Domenico Ghirlandaio.
Federico, nicknamed “the Light of Italy”, is a landmark figure in the history of the Italian Renaissance. He imposed justice and stability on his tiny state. He engaged the best copyists and editors in his private scriptorium to produce the most comprehensive library outside of the Vatican. He was a staunch supporter in the development of fine artists, including the early training of the young painter Raphael.
Despite his privileged rank, Federico always remained interested in the average citizen. He took care of soldiers who might be killed or wounded, providing, for example, dowries for their daughters. He often strolled the streets of Urbino unarmed and unattended, inquiring in shops and businesses as to the well-being of the citizens. He held to the belief that all citizens, regardless of rank, were equal under the law.
Celebrate Your Faith is proud to offer a very limited number of this rare Bible for sale. Additionally, the painstaking reproduction of this masterpiece is adorned and jeweled on the exterior cover to create an exclusive version not found anywhere else. The brilliant gemstones and meticulous detailing add a truly remarkable quality to this extraordinary find. Reserve your copy today!
To learn more about Federico da Montefeltro, visit Federico da Montefeltro on Wikipedia
To read about and see excerpts from treasures of the Vatican Library, including the Urbino Bible, visit The European Library
See some of the amazing work in this Bible below. Click on any of the images to see a larger one.
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The San Damiano Cross is the large Romanesque rood cross that St. Francis of Assisi was praying before when he received the commission from the Lord to rebuild the Church. The original crucifix was painted by an unknown Umbrian artist in the twelfth century.
The San Damiano Cross is rich with symbolism based on the elaborate imagery contained in this icon. The cross is called an icon cross because it contains images of people who have a part in the meaning of the cross.
Below are some selected highlights along with reflection Scriptures to consider.
The central element of the San Damiano Crucifix is the figure of Christ. It is not the body of a corpse, but of God Himself, incorruptible unto eternity and the source of life, radiating the hope of the Resurrection. Christ is a figure of light dominating the scene and giving light to the other figures. Christ stands upright, not nailed. The eyes of Jesus are open: He looks out to the world, which He has saved. He is alive, the one who is eternal.
“Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, ‘I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.’” John 8:12 NKJV
The Hand of the Father:
From within the semi-circle at the very top of the Icon, He whom no eye has seen reveals Himself in a benediction. This blessing is given by the right hand of God with the finger extended – the Holy Spirit. The Father gives the gift of the Holy Spirit to all because of the merits of the Christ’s Passion.
“And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, ‘which,’ He said, ‘you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.’” Acts 1:4-5 NKJV
The Astonished Angels:
Around the crossbar of the cross, there are two groups of angels – animatedly discussing the scene unfolded before them.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 NKJV
The Centurion of Capernaum:
To the right of the Cross stands the Centurion. He holds a piece of wood in his left hand, indicating his building of the Synagogue (Luke 7:1-10). The little boy beyond his shoulder is his son healed by Jesus. The three heads behind the boy show “he and his whole household believed” (John 4:45-54). He has extended his thumb and two fingers, a symbol of the Trinity, while his two closed fingers symbolize the hidden mystery of the two natures of Jesus the Christ. “Truly He is the Son of God” (Mark 15:39).
“Jesus said to him, ‘Go your way; your son lives.’ So the man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him, and he went his way. And as he was now going down, his servants met him and told him, saying, ‘Your son lives!’ Then he inquired of them the hour when he got better. And they said to him, ‘Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.’ So the father knew that it was at the same hour in which Jesus said to him, ‘Your son lives.’ And he himself believed, and his whole household.” John 4:50-53 NKJV
Also to the right of the Cross stands Mary Magdalene, she who loved the Lord so sincerely that she would not even abandon Him at His grave. Listening intently to Mary Magdalene is Mary Clopas, another woman who came to the tomb with Mary Magdalene, to anoint the dead body of the Lord. These two women typify an intense and courageous devotion that persists no matter how difficult life may become.
“For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39 NKJV
In the red border around the cross are scrolls that recall tendrils of vines. They bring to mind Christ’s admonition that He is the vine while we are but branches. To bear fruit, we must remain in Him.
“‘I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.’” John 15:5 NKJV
Near the border of the Cross on the right, just below the level of Christ’s knees, you will find a small rooster. Firstly, this recalls the denial of Peter, who wept bitterly, and reminds us that we should not be presumptuous of the strength of our faith. Secondly, the rooster proclaims the new dawn of the Risen Christ, the true light (1 John 2:8).
“Again, a new commandment I write to you, which thing is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away, and the true light is already shining.” 1 John 2:8 NKJV
“But for you who fear My name, the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings” Malachi 4:2 NKJV
For further explanations into the meanings of these and many other symbols and icons on the San Damiano Cross, please visit any of the following websites:
Celebrate Your Faith sells Italian crafted replicas of the original cross in sizes ranging from 3-29 inches. These are reproductions of the original that hangs in Santa Chiara (St. Clare) Church in Assisi, Italy. Along with this, we have many other Wall Crosses.
“My life was my work. My work was my legacy. My legacy was based on my deep connection with Christ…even before I knew it. Isn’t that remarkable?”
Jo Marz, August 2010
For 24 years, Jo Marz has designed and created innovative, exquisite and collectible gift items in the United States. Collected by performing arts legends, respected museums, renowned business leaders, heads of state and royal families, the Jo Marz audience extends in a special way to the people who share her personal desire for elegant, hand-crafted items and those, like Jo Marz, who see life and beauty through the lens of faith.
“The soul-felt joy that my work brought me was the connection I experienced when each piece I designed found that special person who was meant to cherish it. I hold them in a place of honor in my heart.”
Jo combines unusual imported and domestic materials, semiprecious stones and unique findings to create heirloom-quality designs. She is one of the few remaining American designers producing handmade items in the United States.
CelebrateYourFaith.com is the exclusive source for many of these fine items. See the remarkable Jo Marz collection here.
One of goldsmith Susan Howard’s most rewarding commissions was to create a beautiful double heart pendant using original wedding rings from a widow and her husband. Susan realized that not everyone would have jewelry from a lost loved one to make such a piece, but knew that many grieving people would appreciate such a memorial. The idea that was to become Comfort Wear Jewelry™ was conceived.
I poured out my heart to create Comfort Wear Jewelry™. All of my pieces are inspirational, many are designed to help bring comfort to people during the challenging times we are all faced with in life. I am no stranger to emotional heartache, and have had my share of life’s difficulties, but through my faith, I have overcome them.
Among Susan’s collection of memorial jewelry you will find pieces for the loss of a child, mother, father, spouse, and friend, as well as Sudden Loss and Military Loss. Inscribed on the back of each piece is a prayer written by Susan, inspired by her faith. On the front of each piece is beautiful artwork, as well as a place to personalize the piece with engraving.
One of the recipients of [Susan's] “Sudden Loss” pendant was a woman whose son had taken his life. The woman’s best friend gave her the pendant as a gift to celebrate her son’s life on the anniversary of his death. Her friend considered giving flowers but gave the woman a bracelet with the pendant from the Memorial Jewelry Collection line because she knew it would be for a lifetime, Howard said. The woman was deeply moved when she received the bracelet because Howard had engraved it with her son’s name, she said. The inscription reads, “Taken in such a sudden way, so many things I didn’t get to say. Until we are together in heaven and we never part, please Lord heal my broken heart.”
(from the Herald News)
Susan donates 10% of her royalties to the Jewelers for Children organization, which benefits causes such as Autism Speaks, Make-A-Wish Foundation, St Jude’s and the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatrics’ and AIDs Foundation.
The artisan is Israeli-born and has a desire to express her passion for the Word of God through the jewelry that she designs. Her collection of inspirational jewelry is made with care and she follows high quality standards. It is her prayer that through this jewelry, the word of God will go forth bringing people to the knowledge of God and the hope of His calling.
A constant reminder of the love of God, the God’s Love Pendant was inspired by Romans 8:39, “Nothing shall separate me from the love of God in Christ”.
See this piece and other Designs by LeeHee at CelebrateYourFaith.com!
The Vatican Library, heir to the ancient papal libraries, is one of the world’s greatest repositories of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts and incunabula (books printed before 1501). Founded by Pope Sixtus IV in the late 1400s, the Vatican Library houses more than 70,000 volumes of manuscripts, as well as tens of thousands more maps, parchments, and archival volumes.
The artistic strengths of the Vatican Library are found in the magnificently frescoed Sistine Chapel and the sacred antiquities of the Museo Sacro (Museum of Christian Art). The Vatican Library also possesses exceptional Byzantine and Romanesque ivories, textiles and vestments dating to the earliest centuries of the Church, frescoes and ancient paintings by major artists, and the incomparable Treasury of the Sancta Sanctorum (Holy of Holies) with its Medieval reliquaries.
Through an exclusive licensing agreement with The Vatican Library, our supplier has been granted the privilege of entering the library, and permission to sketch and photograph the breathtaking works of art within. Drawing on these resources, they have created a line of jewelry and gifts inspired by The Vatican Library’s renowned, yet seldom viewed, art and architecture.
Jeweled angels, etched crosses, engraved crucifixes, hand-strung rosaries, hand enameled rosary boxes, delicate bookmarks and faith inspiring key rings are among the many offerings available from The Vatican Library Collection.
Deborah Birdoes’s Jewelry With A Message™ conveys a significant and sometimes hidden message. Each design is based on scripture, and comes with a poem Deborah has written to connect the message and the meaning to the jewelry piece. Deborah’s designs are faith-filled ‘symbols of hope’ that remind the wearer to trust in God to watch over us, with His tender, loving care.
I take no credit for the designs I create. I just make the words dance with visual concepts. The desire of my heart is that the words comes alive for people as they wear the jewelry which has for them a special message or meaning . The Jewelry With A Message™ pieces were created to be unique to the person who buys them or receives them as a gift.
More than anything in the world, I desired to create designs that would give people comfort and hope. Ideas began to come to me and I just kept writing them in a book until I could develop them one at a time. I had such joy in writing the poetry that went along with the pieces that usually expressed feelings of what the piece now visually meant.
Deborah Birdoes was the second of ten children and the oldest of five girls. She grew up in Phoenix, AZ and went to college there. After her graduation and marriage to her high school sweetheart, Deborah began the long and rewarding task of raising a family, developing her talents as her faith grew.
When her children were in school, Deborah began using her talents in decorating houses, and then was soon asked by an owner of a large boutique to help her with buying and merchandise displays. From interior design, to arts and crafts, to finally designing her own jewelry collections, Deborah continued to grow and develop the unique abilities given to her.
We have an extensive selection of Deborah’s Jewelry With A Message™ creations at CelebrateYourFaith.com. Deborah categorizes the collection by life experiences beginning with the Biblical foundation of Faith, Hope, and Love. Other categories of the Jewelry With A Message™ Collection are Charity, Praise, Grieving, and Purity. There are also pieces that celebrate Family, Friendship, Journey, Anniversaries, and Just Because moments. For select pieces, Deborah also has has created matching Bracelets, Earrings, and Rings.
Click here to see Deborah’s Jewelry With A Message™.
CelebrateYourFaith.com is now featuring the work of award-winning studio jeweler Ashleigh George, whose rich yet playful designs are inspired by Scripture along with the beautiful and intricate patterns found in nature. Each piece is handmade with love, and celebrates love, joy, and special occasions.
Ashleigh’s fascination with jewelry began at an early age in her journeys through the contents of her grandmother’s jewelry boxes. She was intrigued by the history of each piece, the memories they carried, and what they meant to her grandmother. Ashleigh’s own creations embody this tradition. Her hope is that in owning and wearing her designs, you will be inspired by what they represent, and that this inspiration will imbue your own memories with comfort and strength.
Handcrafted by master artisans, these bronze gifts imported from Germany are sure to be treasured. Stock is limited, so please act now!