Full-page illustrations of certain scenes recur in the vast majority of books of hours from the Middle Ages through the Renaissance. These essential scenes include the depictions of the Gospel writers that accompany the Gospel passages,

the Crucifixion in the Hours of the Cross,

and Bathsheba in her bath (or David with his harp), in the Seven Penitential Psalms.

Illustrations in printed hours include some additional topics. The depiction of “planetary man,” for example, shows human anatomy (the “microcosm”) in relation to the cosmos (“the macrocosm”), a theme that surfaces often in works of the period.