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Gothic Textualis: Transcription

Transcription Exercise 3

Please transcribe the first 14 lines from the left column from this breviary-missal from Northeast France (ca. 1290-1310).

New abbreviations and letterforms

When this scribe writes two is next to each other, he writes ij, which is a device that emerges in the Gothic period to help distinguish a series of is from other groups of minims. You should transcribe ij as ii, since the j is just a variant form of i and does not represent the modern English letter j.

As in the last manuscript, you will encounter both the 2-shaped r after round letters, and the -rum abbreviation, which is the 2-shaped r with a stroke through the final stroke of the r. They look rather different in this hand than they did in the very angular hand of the last manuscript.

This is a 2-shaped r following d:  detail from Bethune Breviary showing two characters combined into what looks like one

and this is the -rum abbreviation, in the genitive plural -orum:  detail showing two characters combined into what looks like one You would transcribe this or(um), since the stroke represents the omitted -um.

This manuscript is your first time seeing the abbreviation for final -us, which looks like a superscript 9. It appears in the first word on this page, and also in line 11.

You will also see a form like a 3, which can represent various omitted final letters.

Here, it is used with s to abbreviate sed:  detail showing two characters combined into what looks like one Transcribe s(ed) . This is the same abbreviation that appeared as the last word in the previous exercise.

In line 14, the common mark of abbreviation is used four times: once over a nomen sacrum; once as usual to indicate omission of a final m; and twice to indicate simply that something has been omitted in abbreviation. The first word in that line is Q(uonia)m and the last word is iust(orum).


Transcribe the first 14 lines in the first column.

HMML, Bethune MS 2, f. 7r. Used under a CC BY-NC 4.0 license.


Transcription Answer Key

Column 1
1. Beat(us) uir
2. qui no(n)
3. abiit in
4. consilio
5. impior(um)
6. et i(n) uia
7. peccator(um) non stetit.´ et in
8. cathedra pestilentie n(on) sedit·
9. Sed in lege d(omi)ni uoluntas·
10. Et erit tanqua(m) lignum·
11. Et folium ei(us) no(n) defluet.´
12. Non sic impii non sic.´ s(ed)
13. Ideo n(on) resurgunt impii.
14. Q(uonia)m nouit d(omi)n(u)s uia(m) iust(orum)·