Hand: Hand 2 (179r11–90v), BL Harley 585
- Hand 2 (179r11–90v)
- BL Harley 585
- Saec. xi1
Stokes, English Vernacular Script, ca 990–ca 1035, Vol. 2 (PhD Thesis, University of Cambridge, 2006)
This hand is very similar to G.421-2, at least morphologically, although it is more compact, more consistent, and the letters are better formed; indeed, it is conceivable that the original scribe made these additions some time after he first wrote the book. The script is still somewhat irregular and has an untidy appearance. It was written with a fairly thick pen and some shading. Ascenders are fairly thick, about the length of minims, show irregularly formed wedges, and are at varying angles but mostly forward-leaning. Descenders are thick, relatively straight, and about the length of minims. Minims are somewhat irregular and have either wedges or turn leftward at the top, with roughly horizontal feet. Single-compartment a is found throughout and is more or less teardrop shaped. A fairly low and wide but essentially teardrop-shaped a-component is found in æ, the hook of which is often tall but narrow. Round c and d only are found, the back of the latter varying in length but being curved, quite thick, and rising well above cue-height. Horned e was used throughout, the tongue at cue-height and normally joined to the following letter, and the hook bulging slightly and curving back to the left before joining the tongue. The tail of g is 3-shaped, hangs from the right of the top-stroke, and extends beyond this stroke on both sides. The shoulders of h, m, n, and r tend to begin with a relatively long, flat stroke which then turns downwards; the feet of h, m, and n are comparatively large, and the foot of r is comparatively short but still longer than those of h, m, and n. Long and low s are found, the former consistently before t and the latter elsewhere; low s, like f, can be deeply split, sometimes all the way to the base of the descender. The conventional distinction was followed between þ and ð. The back of ð is angled at about 60° and is usually slightly concave down but can turn up at the tip, and the through-stroke is hooked down on the right. The toe of t can be turned up, and the south-west quadrant of x consists of a long, hairline stroke which then curves into a thick, approximately horizontal component beneath the preceding letter. Straight-limbed dotted y was used, the tail of which is hooked right and the top right branch hooked left. The top of 7 is straight, short, and angled up slightly, and the down-stroke is fairly straight. Latin is not distinguished by script.