French noble family of patrons. During the mid-15th century members of the Breton family of Coëtivy were influential in French affairs. Their most esteemed member was Admiral Prigent or Prégent de Coëtivy (b c. 1399; d Cherbourg, 20 July 1450), a distinguished campaigner and important bibliophile. Several manuscripts bearing the admiral's heraldry, his motto Dame sans per or other marks of ownership have survived, many containing significant illumination. Among the most opulent are a Livre du trésor des histoires (Paris, Bib. Arsenal, MS. 5077; Paris, Louvre, R.F. 1928) that originally contained over 225 miniatures and a French translation of Boccaccio's De claris mulieribus (Lisbon, Mus. Gulbenkian, MS. L.A. 143) with more than 100 miniatures (mostly missing). These manuscripts, datable to the second decade of the 15th century, contain miniatures in the innovative style of the Boucicaut master, and the Boccaccio also features the work of other leading illuminators, such as the Master of the Cité des Dames and the Master of the Harvard Hannibal. Considering their early date, it is unclear if Prigent himself commissioned these manuscripts. They were certainly in his possession by 1444, when they were included in an inventory listing goods moved from Rochefort, where he was captain of the castle from 1431, to his château at Taillebourg. Another inventoried work is a Livre du roy Méliadus (Paris, Bib. N., MS. fr. 340, fols 121v–205v), partly executed by the Master of Egerton 1070 (fl c. 1405–20).
From The Grove Encyclopedia of Northern Renaissance Art in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Renaissance Art.