Hand: Main Hand, BL Cotton Augustus ii.22
Stokes, English Vernacular Script, ca 990–ca 1035, Vol. 2 (PhD Thesis, University of Cambridge, 2006)
This hand is typical for an eleventh-century boundary-clause inasmuch as the letters are tall and narrow, written with a fairly thin pen, and have long, straight ascenders and descenders which are two to three times the length of minims. Indeed, the hand seems particularly close to G.353-1. Neither the Latin nor the Vernacular script show consistent wedges, but very small wedges are usually found in the boundary-clause. Minims have short approach-strokes and short feet. The top of a is fairly straight but angled at about 30–40°, and the back is angled at about 80°; the letter is thus essentially teardrop-shaped, if sometimes a little rounded. Much the same form was used for æ, the tongue of which is high and just below cue-height, and the hook sits on the shoulder and reachs a little above cue-height but is never trully tall. Round c was used, as was both round and slightly horned e with tongue and hook like those of æ. The back of d is of medium length, angled between about 20–50°, and vertical-tipped. The tongue of f is long and can be slightly concave up, and the hook branches from below cue-height. The top of g is straight and flat, and the mid-section begins on the right, swings to the left then back to the right, and ends in a very wide, open tail, the bottom of which is roughly horizontal and has a flourish at the tip. The shoulders of h, m, n, and r all branch well below cue-height, have a very thin rising stroke, and then turn into a slightly rounded and quite thick down-stroke. Round s was used frequently, the lower curve of which is wide and the upper curve short but reaching above cue-height. Low s is also found, particularly in the -es ending, and tall s was used before t and sometimes elsewhere with a down-stroke which tapers rapidly and trails off with a hair-stroke to the left. The conventional distinction was followed betweenð and þ. The structure of ð is exactly that of d, and the through-stroke is thin and fairly straight. Straight-limbed dotted y was used throughout, the upper right branch of which is hooked left and the tail hooked right. The top of 7 is hooked up on the left and rises slightly to the right. Latin was consistently distinguished by script.