Lot 330

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Monumental 1177 DS of Louis VII with Incredible Provenance, Unique with Great Ties to the Crusades, Superb 

LOUIS VII, King of France. Manuscript document signed personally by Louis VII (1137-1180) with his royal signum. One full page, small folio, Senlis, 1177. Thirteen lines, in Latin, on vellum, written in a fine French chancellary script of the period. Original yellow silk threads attached to the seal-fold and a vellum blank to which the seal (no longer present) would have been attached. Includes a transcription and a translation. Light surface wear and soiling, usual folds, generally in superb condition for its age. A magnificent example.

Documents from the court of Louis VII at Senlis are exceedingly rare at auction, as the majority are in public collections. In the present example, Louis grants the possession of the villa called Neri (today Néry) and all fiefs and rights in the lands adjacent to Theobald of Crispero, nobleman of Oise, and his heirs and assigns. He signs the charter with his monogram or sign-manual. The grant was witnessed by four of his court officers, enumerated in the document here: his Chamberlain Reinalt, Marshall Radulphus, Theobaldus “dapiferi nostri” and Lord Butler Guido. Radulphus was Raoul I, Count of Clermont-en-Beauvaisis and the Connétable of France from 1174 until 1191; Theobaldus was Theobald V, Count of Blois. Both men were to die during the Siege of Acre in 1191. The document is recorded from a 14th century copy, this original having been lost at that time, by Luchaire in Etudes sur les actes de Louis VII, Paris 1885, No. 734, and in Beauvillé's work on the documents of Picardy, Vol. II, p111.

This charter originally appeared in the Charles Hamilton catalog, September 22, 1966, where it then sold for the ungodly sum of $1,600; Lincoln letters in that sale which sold for that much are now worth well into the six-figure range.

Provenance: Erik von Scherling, manuscript dealer of Oegstgeest (near Leyden), Holland; listed in his publication “Rotulus. A Bulletin for Manuscript Collectors” Vol. VI, 1952; offered (and presumably sold) in November 1951 to Dr. Herbert Ernest Klingelhofer (1915-2015), collector and former president of the Manuscript Society.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.


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March 15, 2023 11:00 AM EDT
Wilton, CT, US

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Bid Increments
From: To: Increments:
$0 $99 $10
$100 $299 $20
$300 $499 $25
$500 $999 $50
$1,000 $1,999 $100
$2,000 $2,999 $200
$3,000 $4,999 $250
$5,000 $9,999 $500
$10,000 $19,999 $1,000
$20,000 $49,999 $2,500
$50,000 + $5,000