Hand: Hand 2 (incl. pp. 166, 170, 204, 215), Scheide 71

Hand 2 (incl. pp. 166, 170, 204, 215)
Scheide 71
Saec. x/xi

Stokes, English Vernacular Script, ca 990–ca 1035, Vol. 2 (PhD Thesis, University of Cambridge, 2006)

The second scribe wrote brief stints which are interspersed between the work of the first, and so this hand must be contemporary with G.905-1. As Ker noted, however, G.905-2 has a ‘rather later appearance’:Ker, Catalogue, p. 454 (no. 382). it is lighter and more rotund than G.905-1 and is forward-leaning. Furthermore, rather than the thin approach-strokes which characterize the first hand, the second has large wedges which tend towards rounded blobs at the top of the minim-strokes and descenders, as well as ascenders. Despite these differences, however, the letter-forms are very similar. A round form of a was used, with a ductus which seems close to that of Square minuscule: although it is not clear that three strokes were used, it can have a very flat top and almost vertical back (see, for example, several occurrences at 109r5–6). A more teardrop-shaped form was used after e, with the tongue of the first letter reaching across the top of the second. Like the first scribe, the second constructed the a-component of æ much like that of a regular a, with the e-component sitting on the shoulder; this e-component is normally at or slightly above cue-height, but is high in ligature with a following minim, descender, c, g, o, or t. Round c appears throughout. Both round and horned e were used, as was a tall bulging ligature, and the eye of round e is squinting. Round d was used throughout, the back of which is slightly longer than that of G.905-1 but with a similar range of angles. A long tongue is found on f which can be slightly concave up. The tail of g is round and slightly open, and the mid-section is more compressed laterally, and the bottom vertically, than that of G.905-1. The shoulder on h, m, n, and r is noticeably more rounded, with the stroke branching from the vertical below cue-height, curving over with a slightly bulging ‘knee’, and ending consistently in a horizontal foot; the second stroke of r, in particular, often curves back to the left as it approaches the base-line. Low and long forms of s were used, the latter consistently before t and wynn; the long form, however, is not in ligature, but instead the hook curves back down and rejoins the vertical at cue-height. Some effort was apparently made to observe the conventional distinction between þ and ð. The bowl of þ is rounded, and ð has a long, thick back which either turns slightly upwards or ends in a small wedge, and with a very thin cross-stroke angled between about 15–45°. Only straight-limbed undotted y was used, the letter looking very much like that of G.905-1. A flat, horizontal first stroke at cue-height was used for 7, as was a straight, vertical, second stroke extending very slightly above the first.

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