Le Roman de la Rose: The Dream of l’Amans

Le Roman de la Rose is split into two sections, the first a story about the attempts of a courtier to win the heart of a woman, and the second a medieval allegory with personified figures discussing love. The tremendous miniature below depicts the beginning of the dream of l’Amans (the Lover) from the first part of the poem.

Folio 7r of Harley MS 4425

The miniature is painted in an arched pane, and there are four figures in it. Two figures are inside a brown stone building with a large archway. One man with a white head-wrap lies in bed surrounded by blue drapes and bed curtains, and the other man, dressed in red clothes and a green hat, stands nearby on a yellow carpet. Gray steps lead down to a walled garden where a courtier stands dressed in fancy red, pink, white, and black clothing. Behind him and the building, a man, dressed similarly, stands on a roadway facing a forest and a castle surrounded in blue-green foliage in the distance. The three visible faces are detailed but similar, and the two standing figures look down and to the right. Birds fly in a slightly clouded, bright blue sky. In the margins, blue, orange, white, and red flowers are elaborately painted on a green field. In the bottom margin, a crest with red, white, and black rectangles topped with a decorative helmet with blue dressings appears. There is a rubric underneath the miniature, and the stanza, written in black ink, is indented with the decorated margin.