Hand: Hand 2 (fols. 21–56), BL Cotton Claudius B.iv
- Hand 2 (fols. 21–56)
- BL Cotton Claudius B.iv
- Saec. xi2/4
Stokes, English Vernacular Script, ca 990–ca 1035, Vol. 2 (PhD Thesis, University of Cambridge, 2006)
Although more laterally compressed and less regular than G.315-1, this hand was also densely written with a thick pen and relatively square proportions. Ascenders are thick, rarely longer than minims, and show regular wedges. Descenders are also thick, the length of minims, and straight, but can be tapering, flat-tipped, or slightly turned left. Minims are also short but with prominent wedges and feet. The form of a is somewhere between flat-topped and rotund: the left stroke is rounded and curves most of the way to the top of the back, the intervening space is closed by a horizontal flat stroke, and the back itself is quite vertical and can extend below the bottom of the loop. A similar form was used for æ but with a narrower loop for the a-component. Both æ and e can have horizontal or slightly rising tongues which reach beyond the hook, or can have bulging ligatures, the hooks of which reach back down in tapering curves almost to meet the down-stroke at the bottom of the wedge. Horned e was used throughout, the back of which is normally quite vertical. Round c appears throughout. The back of d is short, quite flat, and angled at about 25°. The tongue of f is long, tapering, and slightly concave up. The tail of g is closed and can be quite narrow, and the mid-section tends to hang from the left of the top-stroke which can itself be concave up. The shoulders of h, m, and n can be quite angular, the thin stroke rising at about 10° and then turning sharply into a thick stroke angled at about 70–80° and curving slightly back to the left before turning out into the foot. This angularity is even more pronounced in r, the downward stroke of which is quite straight and either vertical or angled slightly inward. Low and long s appear throughout. Long s is found often before p, t, and wynn and is quite narrow, with a small hook and tapering, relatively straight descender. The scribe wrote ð almost invariably in preference to þ. The back of ð is thick, straight, and angled at about 60–70°, and the cross-stroke is thin, barely passes through the back, and can be straight or can thicken very slightly at the tip. The second, right-left stroke of x extends into the south-west quadrant and is turned either up or down at the top. Straight-limbed dotted y was used throughout, the tail of which is thin and curves slightly left, and the upper right stroke is hooked left. The top of 7 is slightly concave up, is often thicker on the left, and turns up slightly on the right, and the thick descender waves slightly.