Christine Cox

Posts tagged ‘paleography’

Gothic Script

Gothic, I will tell you candidly
I loathe you paleographically
Your thick strokes and nonexistent thins
Offspring of the Carolingians

Into the seventeenth century
The scribes wielded you like weaponry
You’re as measured as a picket fence
And your letterforms are just too dense
–Christine Cox

To show that Gothic script could be fatiguing to read, medieval scribes invented this joke sentence:

mimi numinum niuium minimi munium nimium uini muniminum imminui uiui minimum uolunt

“The snow gods’ smallest mimes do not wish in any way in their lives for the great duty of the defenses of wine to be diminished.”

3rd century: Roman Half-Uncial Script

Bookbinding, Miniatures, Writing and Paper
(Timeline project)

As early as 3rd century — Roman script Half-Uncial gaining popularity—easier to write, took up less space, required less skill than Uncial. Smoother writing surfaces of parchment and vellum allowed for smoother, rounder writing using fewer strokes per letter. Early development does not use word separation. Later use incorporated separated words.

This post is part of an ongoing series on bookbinding, miniatures, writing and paper since the year 1. Please consider it a kick-start for your own private timeline and a springboard for further research. See my blog for the rest of the series.

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