Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Examples and Patterns of Illuminated and Missal Painting
Though illumination’s popularity quickly waned after the invention of the Gutenberg printing press, it was still practiced in its most traditional form right up until the start of the 20th century. The monks who were skilled in this art were some of the most respected individuals in the community, and were even excused from the regular monastic duties while actively working on commissions. The scriptorium was one of the few places where a monk could be completely undisturbed.
In the 1800s, monasteries still regularly produced illuminated manuscripts to add to their own libraries, or, at the very least, produced honorary illuminated editions to immortalize wealthy donors to the monastery.
That’s not to say the monks were the only ones who practiced this revered art; in fact, between the late 14th and mid-18th centuries, monasteries increasingly purchased manuscripts for their libraries from much-larger secular scriptoria in the big cities of Italy and the Netherlands. Secular illumination centers nearly overtook the monastic production of general manuscripts and general commissions, but there was still a moderate demand for monk-produced commissions from the highly-religious large donors to the monasteries.
Guide to the Art of Illuminating and Missal Painting. W. & G. Audsley, 1861.