Hand: Main Hand, BL Additional Ch. 19798
Stokes, English Vernacular Script, ca 990–ca 1035, Vol. 2 (PhD Thesis, University of Cambridge, 2006)
The boundary-clause has an angular and somewhat spiky appearance. The pen was held relatively flat, the bodies of letters are small and angular, and ascenders can be three or more times longer than minims and have large pointed wedges. Descenders taper somewhat, are typically shorter than ascenders but still longer than minims, and can have small diagonal finishing-strokes. Minims have small approach-strokes or wedges and very small horizontal or slightly rising feet. Single-compartment a was used throughout, the shape somewhere between teardrop and rounded. The top of a was usually formed in one stroke with the back, but the top varies in length and the letter can sometimes be flat-topped and approximately square. A similar construction was used for æ, but the lower curve of the a-component usually reaches up more than in a alone, and the lower curve of the e-component descends slightly further. The tongues of both æ and e are usually thin and angled up at about 30–40°, and the hooks are angular and usually extending slightly above cue-height. Tall-æ ligature is found occasionally (gemæro, line 8; stræt, line 10), in which the hook rises by about a minim’s length but still remains well below ascender-height; it then turns down sharply but remains open. The back of e is more or less vertical, often has a very slight horn, and tends to meet the hook at an angle. Round c was used throughout. The back of d can be angled at about 45° or can be bilinear. The tongue of f tapers, flicks up on the right, and extends left of the down-stroke. The top of g is quite short and is hooked down on the right and sometimes up on the left; the tail hangs from the middle or right, is angled at about 45° down and left, and then swings around in a large open curve with the tip approximately horizontal; once the tail is closed in an oblong loop (twégen, line 13). The shoulders of h, m, n, and r are all very angular and often turn back in to the left. Low and tall s were both used, tall before t but also sometimes initially, and low elsewhere (but tall then low in leofesunes, line 12). Tall s stands firmly on the base-line, has a wedge well above cue-height, and has a short and sometimes quite angular hook. A slightly bulging and slightly laterally extended s+t ligature is found once (stræt, line 10), the ligature being very similar in form to that used in the Latin text. The conventional distinction between þ and ð was mostly followed but ð was often used for demonstrative pronouns (ða, ðam, ðone, but also þa, þære, þam). The back of ð is long, thick, and can be very straight; it is angled at about 45–60° and has a relatively thick cross-stroke which is hooked down on the right, and the tip of the back sometimes has a thin finishing-stroke angled down and left (cymð, line 8; norð, line 10). The descender of þ is usually very short. Straight-limbed dotted y was used, the right branch of which is hooked left, and the tail is hooked right. The top of 7 is slightly concave up, and the descender is essentially vertical but is slightly wavy. Latin is generally distinguished from Old English by script, although Insular letter-forms are found.