Hand: Hand 4 (verso, ll. 13–21), BL Additional 61735
- Hand 4 (verso, ll. 13–21)
- BL Additional 61735
- Saec. xi1/4
Stokes, English Vernacular Script, ca 990–ca 1035, Vol. 2 (PhD Thesis, University of Cambridge, 2006)
Much of the ink has badly faded, and the sudden transitions from thick, black strokes to almost nothing suggest that the document has been touched up; close inspection, however, reveals no signs of writing under the dark ink, and the aspect does not suggest that the scribe was tracing over previous writing. The scribe wrote quite large and irregular letters using a fairly thick pen with little shading, and the resulting hand looks unpractised. Ascenders are short and have heavy wedges or barbs. Descenders are also short and are straight. Minims have clumsy approach-strokes which can be long and can reach back to meet the preceeding letter. Caroline a was normally used, though sometimes without a top in which case the result is essentially single-compartment with a slanted back. Caroline a was also used for æ, the body of the a-component being quite large, the head of the a-component being quite low, the hook low and squinting, and the tongue high, long, and rising slightly. Round c was used throughout. The back of d is medium length, angled at about 45–50°, and essentially straight but turned up slightly at the tip. Round e was normally used, although the back can be quite straight, and the tongue is long and approximately horizontal. The tongue of f is usually on the base-line but can be at mid-height or even close to cue-height, and the hook can branch from close to the base-line or can reach up from the top of the down-stroke and so be approximately Caroline. The top of g is flat, the mid-section hangs from the centre and is quite angular, and the tail is vertically compressed, fairly wide, open, and hooked up at the tip. Little pen-lift was used for h, m, or n, and h is essentially Caroline in form, although the down-strokes of m and n are more or less straight. Both r and s are clumsy hybrids of the Insular and Caroline forms. The down-stroke of r extends from cue-height to base-line, but the hook reaches down almost to the base-line as well before turning up sharply. Similarly, s stands on or extends slightly below the base-line, and the hook extends above cue-height. The scribe preferred ð somewhat to þ, writing ðusend regularly as well as ða and ðam. The body of þ is quite rounded, and the back of ð is fairly straight, angled at about 70–80°, but is vertical-tipped. The through-stroke of ð is hooked up on the left and down on the right. Bilinear x was used, as was straight-limbed undotted y, both branches of which are hooked left but the right branch is somewhat higher.