List of Illustrations

Figures

  1. 1Scribal handover at 172 (BL175)v.1–4 66
  2. 2Some letter-forms characteristic of Scribe A’s hand, resized for comparison. Taken from (l-r, top to bottom): 92(94) (BL95)v.18; 93(91) (BL96)r.3; 92(94) (BL95)v.20; 92(94) (BL95)v.6; 93(91) (BL96)r.12; 93(91) (BL96)r.19; 93(91) (BL96)r.11; 142 (BL144)r.11 68
  3. 3Some characteristic and variant Scribe B letter-forms, resized for comparison. All taken from 173 (BL176)r, lines (l-r, top to bottom): 6, 13, 2, 8, 12, 12, 1, 13, 19, 7, 19, 8, 5 69
  4. 4Catchwords at the foot of 98(100) (BL101)v 86
  5. 5Two women on 102 (BL105)v 106
  6. 6Seated man on 103 (BL106)r and the council of the mountains on 102 (BL105)r 107
  7. 7Magical trees, on, l-r, 100(96) (BL103)v; 102 (BL105)r; 103 (BL106)v 108
  8. 8Frontispieces to New Minster’s Liber Vitae, Stowe 944 fol. 6r, and the New Minster Charter, Vespasian A. viii, fol. 2v 108
  9. 9Two camels by different hands on 98(100) (BL101)v 112
  10. 10Catinii by different hands on 103 (BL106)v 113
  11. 11Ants as large as dogs having their gold stolen from them on 98(100) (BL101)r 116
  12. 1299(95) (BL102)v, with enlarged views of the sections with a Middle English gloss, probably in two hands 117
  13. 13The first two images of the text, both of sheep and with different frames, on 95(97) (BL98)v 121
  14. 14Hens and wilddeor on the second side of Wonders, 96(98) (BL99)r 123
  15. 15The two-headed men of §11 from Nowell, 98(100) (BL101)v, and Tiberius B. v, 81r 124
  16. 16103 (BL106)v and details of textual squeezing and spacing 126
  17. 17Detail of þ crossing the image of the council on 102 (BL105)r 127
  18. 18The two-headed snake and detail of textual interaction on 96(98) (BL99)v 128
  19. 19Effective use of colour and parchment in the Blemmya on 99(95) (BL102)v, Donestre and his victim on 100(96) (BL103)v, and less vividly for the Panotus on 101 (BL104)r 133
  20. 20101 (BL104)v, with the shining eyed man and priest in his temple 134
  21. 21The shepherd, Lertex with extended ears and Hostes on 99(95) (BL102)r 136
  22. 22Some coloured capitals early in Alexander, on 104 (BL107)r and 105 (BL108)v 137
  23. 23Protruding feet of the Donestre, §20, on 100(96) (BL103)v and the Panotus, §21, on 101 (BL104)r 138
  24. 24Compressed d in londbunis underneath the ants and gold image on 98(100) (BL101)r 139
  25. 25‘Default’ design for each side in Wonders 140
  26. 26The singing Centaur on 99(95) (BL102)v 142
  27. 27Two contrasting images for the generous men, §30, on 103 (BL106) r & v 143
  28. 28Different faces, flipped and resized for comparison, l-r and top to bottom, shepherd and Hostes (99(95) (BL102)r); priest in his temple (101 (BL104)v); the three figures at the council on the mountain (102 (BL105)r); bearded woman (102 (BL105)v); seated man and generous man (both on 103 (BL106)r) 145
  29. 29Confused open book spread, 98(100) (BL101)v – 99(101) (BL102)r 146
  30. 30‘þa men’ on 97(99) (BL100)v.18 158
  31. 31‘Micro-corrections’ in St Christopher: cempum on 94(92) (BL97)r.8 and cristoforus on 95(97) (BL98)r.3 161
  32. 32‘Micro-corrections’ in Wonders: tægl on 102 (BL105)v.11 and an erased cross-piece on 105 (BL108)v.3 162
  33. 33Possibly added sel on 115(107) (BL110)v.15 168
  34. 34Varying abbreviation at 114(122) (BL125)v.9–17 169
  35. 35Changing compression on 104 (BL107)v.9–12 170
  36. 36Changing tongues of e on 109 (117) (BL120)v.9–13 171
  37. 37Uneasy violation of the right hand margin on 122(114) (BL117)v.8–14 172
  38. 38Distribution of minor capitals in Alexander 187
  39. 39Distribution of minor capitals in Scribe A’s Beowulf 191
  40. 40Top to bottom and left to right, O forms in St Christopher (92(94) (BL95)r), Wonders (97(99) (BL100)r) and Beowulf (168 (BL171)r); H in St Christopher (93(91) (BL96)r), Alexander (104 (BL107)r), and Beowulf (138 (BL140)r); G in St Christopher (94(92) (BL97)v) and Beowulf (164 (BL167)r); resized for comparison 192
  41. 41Variant G forms on Cotton Nero A. i, fol. 33r 194
  42. 42Decorative major capitals in Beowulf, l-r and top to bottom: 141 (BL143)r; 150 (BL153)r; less decorated H from 156 (B159)r, 145 (BL147)r, 148 (BL151)r, 152 (BL155)v, less decorated Ð from 146 (BL148)r. Resized for comparison 195
  43. 43l-r and top to bottom, identical minor G forms from Wonders (100(96) (BL103)r.6), Alexander (123 (BL126)r.5), and Beowulf (135 (BL137)r.5); and minor S forms from St Christopher (91(93) (BL94)r.3), Wonders (97(99) (BL100)r.8), and Alexander (112(120) (BL123)v.6), all resized for comparison 196
  44. 44Poorly managed endings in Nowell, 103 (BL106)v, and Scheide 71 fol. 119v 197
  45. 45The openings of Alexander on 104 (BL107)r.1–6, and of Beowulf on 129 (BL132)r.1–4 198
  46. 46Scribal efforts to end a side with the end of a half-line in Junius 11, pages 116, 161, and 89 204
  47. 47Beowulf line 158, on 133 (BL135)r.20 204
  48. 48Stray lines and weak letter formation on 193 (BL197)r.6 and 203 (BL206)r.14 211
  49. 49Pen trials immediately beneath text at the foot of 182 (BL185)r 212
  50. 50Corrected holofernus on 199 (BL202)v.7 217
  51. 51Doubly corrected forlæton on 202 (BL205)v.18 218
  52. 52Scribe B’s mere ƿio ingasmilts on 193 (BL197)r.10 219
  53. 53Mark of omission in Scribe A’s work (159 (BL162)v.14) and of abbreviation in Scribe B’s (199 (BL202)r.10), both perhaps by Scribe B 220
  54. 54Scribe B’s mark of insertion in Scribe A’s work on 160 (BL163)r.17 and actual insertion in his own, with a caudata added perhaps by a third hand, on 173 (BL176)v.4 221
  55. 55Corrections to his work that may not be by Scribe B on (top-bottom) 184 (BL187)r.19; 192 (BL196)v.2; 193 (BL197)v.20 224
  56. 56Judith, lines 320–22 on 206 (BL209)r.19–21 226
  57. 57179 (BL182)r.10–13 233
  58. 58179 (BL182)v.10–12 234
  59. 59Erasure, retouching, and possible water damage on 192 (BL196)v.1–6 238
  60. 60Fitt numbers in Beowulf squeezed into and left out of similar sized spaces on 189 (BL193)v and 191 (BL195)r 240
  61. 61Fitt numbers x (199 (BL202)r), xi (202 (B205)r), and xii (204 (BL207)v) in Judith 241
  62. 62Scribe B’s G (173 (BL176)r) and H (198 (BL201)r) in Beowulf; H (202 (BL205)r) and S (204 (BL207)v) in Judith, exhibiting similar forms to Scribe A in Beowulf and embellishing in Judith, all resized for comparison; cf. Figures 40 and 42 244
  63. 63Scribe B’s N form on 193 (BL197)r.10, crossed by a correction 246
  64. 64Different u forms used by Scribe A in Alexander (106 (BL109)v.18) and Scribe B in Beowulf (196 (BL200)v.7) 248
  65. 65Differentiated tilde forms used by Scribe B on 204 (BL207)v.3–4 and 205 (BL208)r.15 249
  66. 66A reader’s pen trial, or possibly a response to Alcuin’s letter, on Harley 208, fol. 88r 257
  67. 67A user’s addition to Bald’s Leechbook, Royal 12. D. xvii, fol. 49r 259
  68. 68Eleventh-century updates to Ælfric’s text on Edmund in Julius E. vii, fol. 206v.21–28 261
  69. 69Clumsy attempts to freshen up Scribe E’s hand in Vitellius C. v, fol. 177v.27–36; cf. Figure 57 from Nowell Codex fol. 179 (BL182)v.10–13 263
  70. 70Five hands in five lines, including Wulfstan’s on line 4, on Harley 55 fol. 4v.1–6 265
  71. 71An improvised decoration to fill space in Trinity R. 5. 22, fol. 114v.13–20 278
  72. 72Text obscured by an overly decorative initial and clarified in the margin in Trinity R. 5. 22, fol. 155v.23–28 279
  73. 73The three scribes of the Blickling Homilies: Scheide 71 fol. 109r.2–12, showing Scribe A lines 1–5 and Scribe B lines 6–12; and fol. 110v.10–18, showing Scribe A lines 10–12 and 15–16 with ?Scribe C lines 13–15 284
  74. 74A noble Cynocephalus on Nowell 97(99) (BL100)r 295
  75. 75?ƿūrbasa at the end of Wonders, on 103 (BL106)v.19 339
  76. 76f-like signs in Alexander: 111(119) (BL122)v.18–20; 112 (120) (BL123)v.11–13; and 117(109) (BL112)r.16–18 340
  77. 77l-r and top to bottom, marginal f-like signs in Nero A. i, fols. 70–177, on fols. 70r, 102r, 110r; marginal t on fols. 103r, 105r; marginal f and t on 120r 341
  78. 78Marginal cross at Grendel’s death on 164 (BL167)v.17–19 345
  79. 79Drypoint patterns on 128 (BL131)r, the last page of Alexander, from the centre of lines 7–13 and 16–20 346
  80. 80Marginal decoration in Judith, on 202 (BL205)r and v 347

Colour Plates

  1. 7 Magical trees, on, l-r, 100(96) (BL103)v; 102 (BL105)r; 103 (BL106)v
  2. 8 Frontispieces to New Minster’s Liber Vitae, Stowe 944 fol. 6r, and the New Minster Charter, Vespasian A. viii, fol. 2v
  3. 9 Two camels by different hands on 98(100) (BL101)v
  4. 10Catinii by different hands on 103 (BL106)v
  5. 11 Ants as large as dogs having their gold stolen from them on 98(100) (BL101)r
  6. 16 103 (BL106)v and details of textual squeezing and spacing
  7. 18The two-headed snake and detail of textual interaction on 96(98) (BL99)v
  8. 19Effective use of colour and parchment in the Blemmya on 99(95) (BL102)v, Donestre and his victim on 100(96) (BL103)v, and less vividly for the Panotus on 101 (BL104)r
  9. 22Some coloured capitals early in Alexander, on 104 (BL107)r and 105 (BL108)v
  10. 28Different faces, flipped and resized for comparison, l-r and top to bottom, shepherd and Hostes (99(95) (BL102)r); priest in his temple (101 (BL104)v); the three figures at the council on the mountain (102 (BL105)r); bearded woman (102 (BL105)v); seated man and generous man (both on 103 (BL106)r)
  11. 29Confused open book spread, 98(100) (BL101)v – 99(101) (BL102)r
  12. 57179 (BL182)r.10–13
  13. 71An improvised decoration to fill space in Trinity R. 5. 22, fol. 114v.13–20
  14. 74A noble Cynocephalus on Nowell 97(99) (BL100)r
  15. 75?ƿūrbasa at the end of Wonders, on 103 (BL106)v.19
  16. 77 l-r and top to bottom, marginal f-like signs in Nero A. i, fols. 70–177, on fols. 70r, 102r, 110r; marginal t on fols. 103r, 105r; marginal f and t on 120r
  17. 79Drypoint patterns on 128 (BL131)r, the last page of Alexander, from the centre of lines 7–13 and 16–20
  18. 80Marginal decoration in Judith, on 202 (BL205)r and v

Tables

  1. 1Gathering systems used to describe the Nowell Codex 85
  2. 2Speculative original gatherings in the Nowell Codex 97
  3. 3Intensity of copying Beowulf by gathering and scribe 98
  4. 4Frequency of types of correction in Scribe A’s texts 158
  5. 5Range of numbers of full half-lines per side in each gathering of Scribe A’s Beowulf 176
  6. 6Mean numbers of full half-lines per side across each gathering of Scribe A’s Beowulf 177
  7. 7Numbers of capitals in Scribe A’s texts 182
  8. 8Distribution of Scribe A’s capital forms by gathering of Beowulf 189
  9. 9Four periods of exceptionally high usage of capitalisation in Scribe A’s Beowulf 190
  10. 10Coincidence of half-line and side endings in the major codices of Old English poetry 202
  11. 11Corrections in the texts of the Nowell Codex 214
  12. 12Coincidence of heavily punctuated and extended manuscript pages 231
  13. 13Distribution of scribes in cul Ff. 4. 43 269

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