TEXT FROM LETTERS "S" AND "T."

(France: mid-15th century). Each leaf measuring approximately 338 x 246 mm. (13 1/4 x 9 1/2"). Double column, 52 lines in a cursive script.

Capitals struck in yellow, many paragraph marks alternating red and blue, several two-line initials in red or blue, the latter with red penwork decoration. One side of each slightly yellowed, one leaf with small wormhole and a wrinkle obscuring a couple of words, a few minor marginal spots, but the leaves VERY CLEAN AND IN FINE CONDITION overall.

These leaves are excellent examples of a cursive script that prioritized speed of writing, using numerous abbreviations and ligatures to make the work of the scribe go faster. Probably from a dictionary or grammar (or a combination of the two) made for a student, the words here are arranged in alphabetical order, along with a brief definition of each word and its Latin declensions. Though it shares similarities to a work like Balbus' "Catholicon," we have thus far been unable to find the source of the text; however, the presence of page numbers within the entries suggests that it may have been some kind of concordance corresponding to a more voluminous work. The scribe has also used some clever visual tools to help organize the information presented here: capitals are struck in yellow, there are numerous paragraph markings in alternating colors, and larger letters (some with penwork decoration) draw the eye to the important openings on the page. Such markings would have been extremely useful to readers trying to find their way around an information-rich text such as this. There is plenty of room for further study here, and both the size of these leaves and their attractive condition make them excellent candidates for teaching and private collections alike.
(ST16379-210)