Hand: phi, Exeter 3500

Exeter 3500

U4 - EXON Project

This hand may be recognised by the round, closed tail of g; triangular cauda; the shape of the ampersand in which the final stroke has an endstroke and is attached to the eye; the n-shaped –ur suspension.

1. Letterforms

a.- Uncial form with head that rises and leans over bowl. Tail often ligatures with following letter or curls at word end.

d.- Only straight-backed form used (one round instance as a capital, 123r18 Drogo). Bowl is round and wide, whereas ascender is short (under double minim-height) and shows a small approach stroke (this may occasionally be longer).

e.- Lower component is wide open and rises from baseline in a hairline. Projecting tongue may be exaggerated at word end.

g.- Round tail closed with a hairline. Often a vertical neck from the right of the head is seen. Projecting stroke is found just below the headline.

h.- Both legs are straight and end on the baseline. Ascender is about double minim-height and has an approach stroke.

p.- Head is mostly angular and descender is straight and about double minim-height with an approach stroke.

s.- Round head reaching about double minim-height and small hood on the left. It stands on the baseline.

t.- Curved shaft does not cut across the horizontal bar, which is often wavy.

x.- Equal-limbed form, though left leg is a straight hairline, unlike the other three limbs. It may very occasionally reach below the baseline.

æ.- N/A.

2. Treatment of minims, ascenders & descenders

Minims.- Footed with a small approach stroke and a flick to the right.

Ascenders.- Rather short overall. Usually about or below double minim-height. They have a tiny approach stroke which creates a triangular notch (esp. b, straight d, h and l).

Descenders.-As with ascenders, descenders are rather short (about double minim height too). They are straight and only occasionally show any finishing strokes.

3. Form of capitals

D.- Only round-backed form seen in the stint. Drogo (123r18). Place-name which is found earlier in the same line with a straight-backed, minuscule d. Round form has a wide bowl and its ascender rises at 45º before turning up at the very top.

4. Forms of punctuation

Punctus simplex seems to be only form of punctuation in use.

5. Form of paraph (gallows mark)

J-shaped form very similar (if not the same) to that of ‘epsilon’, who follows the first entry (123r16-19) and both precedes and follows the second one (497r11-15).

6. Forms of abbreviation

Ampersand.- The final stroke has an endstroke (hence it was made upwards) and is attached to the eye which is often rather wide.

et nota.- Not used.

Overline.- Horizontal (or slightly slopping) macron which curls up in the final third.

-ur.- Round n-shape with a projecting tail (not as long as in other hands) with a finishing stroke.

-us.- Open 9-shaped compendium (123r7).

-orum.- N/A.

q- forms.- qua with open a (497r13).

e cauda.- Found both as an e-cauda and q-cauda. Triangular (open fishbone) form, not too dissimilar from that of ‘beta’.

pr- forms.- In pro, hook starts below the baseline in a horizontal stroke that then curls down into a closed loop.

other forms.- N/A.

est.- 497r12. The usual two dots with a wavy horizontal stroke in between.

7. Forms of suspension


8. Ligatures

-ct- ligature: 497r12 predicte.

-rt- ligature: N/A.

-st- ligature: N/A.

-or-: N/A.

9. Method and form of annotation (signes de renvoi?)


10. Method of correction and correction mark

Erasure and writing over.

11. Treatment of numerals

Between dots. They may reach slightly over the headline. v instead of u.

12. Proportions and measurements


- Pricking.-

- Ruling.-

13. Other idiosyncrasies (preferred spellings, usages, …)


What does he write?

Bishop of Coutances (Dn) – 123r6-19

Terrae Occupatae (Dn) – 497r11-15

Other relevant information

Change of nib and ink in the middle of line 123r8. Still, despite the visual differences, there is no question that it is the same scribe.

This hand shares a few features with beta. Namely, they both use a similar form of overline, similar q-cauda, similar x and the overall measurements of ascenders and descenders. This could point to a potential connection between the two scribes?

On the other hand, the Gallows mark is reminiscent of that used by epsilon, the scribe who finishes the second entry in the first stint (123r6-19) and copies the following entries. The second stint (497r11-15) was copied between two stints by epsilon.

In both stints the scribe seems to begin with a thick nib and dark/black ink (this seems to happen with other scribes in Quire 27 - fos.121r-124v). It is also noticeable that in the stint on fo. 123r the scribe struggles to stay on the ruled lines in the first two lines of text (precisely those in a thicker nib). Probably as a consequence of this, between lines 123r7-8 a number of words appear to have been erased. After close examination it looks like phi copied the first four words now in the following line (gildum pro dimidia hida) but they were subsequently deleted and copied again in the correctly ruled line.

No Annotation associated to this record