My Order of the Sacred Stone

Based on the Utrecht Psalter

Exemplar

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Notice the amount of bleed through from the verso

Date: 820-840

Origin: Benedictine Abby near Reims, Hautevillers

Format 330 x 256mm, Latin, 166 pen and ink drawings

This codex contains psalms, hymns, and the Apostles Creed. The illustrations are in dark brown ink, and the illustrations are depictions of the text of the corresponding psalm. The style is very sketchy and nervous without any ornamentation.

There is a theory for the lack of extravagance of this psalter which appeals to me.

The theory that while performing their duties in the choir, several clerics may have recited from the psalter read out before them on the lectern confuses the types of liturgical books in the Middle Ages. This was a practice reserved for large-format antiphonaries. Furthermore, the Utrecht Psalter contains the psalms in their biblical order, whereas the Benedictine Devine Office has them arranged in a different sequence.

Nor can the book have functioned as a decorative exemplar especially for the abbot or archbishop, on account of its simplicity. So the most convincing explanation – reinforced by the rather literally interpreted drawings – is that the psalter served as an aid to young monks in learning the psalms by heart together.

So the Utrecht Psalter is essentially Dick and Jane learn the Psalms.

Materials

Thin Pergamenata, so chosen because of the prominent bleed through of the exemplar.

Penman’s Brown and W&N Red inks.

Illustrations based on Sacred Stone pictures by Master Ursus and others, as well as based on the heraldry of the recipients, which compose the illustrations throughout. Atlantian OP provided the individual heraldry.

Publicly available pictures of the Sacred Stone itself, in Charlotte NC.

Hand bound in the Carolingian style, with the help of the following sites:

 

https://www.westdean.org.uk/study/school-of-conservation/blog/books-and-library-materials/historical-binding-a-carolingian-cutaway-model

https://travelingscriptorium.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/binding-booklet-2015.pdf

 

Process

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After sketches and sample text was decided upon (in the little bound notebook), I set out to cut, line, and assemble the folios( 1 bifold piece of paper)  into signatures (groups of x number folios, in this case 3-4)
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Art and words sketched in graphite with notes to remind me which letters were in red. In this case the first line and the first letter of the text block.
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Royalty and the deceased were singled out with individual treatment. COG passed during the sketch portion of this project.
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In the upper left hand corner is the ductus (a depiction of each letter cut from the exemplar for reference while doing calligraphy), the center is the folio being inked. The bottom is a piece of scratch pergamenata used for testing ink flow and keeping me from getting hand grease on the folio.

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Red ink applied first

After ink was applied to all the folios, and the majority of the graphite was removed, I set to binding the book in the Carolingian style that would be appropriate to the time period. The exemplar appears to have 5 binding spots, so 5 is the number of holes in the following book boards.

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Holes drilled for running twine to bind against
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Boards clamped into position
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Detail of the herringbone binding stitch. Linen thread for stitching. Cotton thread for support.
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Glue applied to the string on the boards.
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Covered with brown leather. Drying with spacer leafs in the front and back to prevent gluing the book shut.

 

Notes

This was done over the course of about a week of work, interspersed between several other projects between October 2018 – March 2019.

The original assignment was to make my own backlog scroll to submit to the Scrivener Royal competition at Coronation in April.  As I’m working on my binding skills, this seemed a good opportunity. The simplicity of the art of the exemplar also allowed me to keep the time commitment down to the appropriate length specified by the rules of the completion, “about a week.”

I learned:

That I need bigger cutting boards for my “book press.”

Penman’s Dark Brown ink smells like cloves, which makes me smile when I work with it.

Thin Pergamenata especially doesn’t like how humid it is my studio.

I need to get wood to use as the book boards instead of composition for this period style binding. I have a stock of modern bookboards, and time constraints.

Thicker thread for the herringbone end piece.

I need to use a thimble.

I need to learn to emboss and gild the leather covers for more visual impact of the book, because my binding looks like old library books that are rebound by the high school art class. Although, it’s only my second binding.

I did not use animal glue , as would have been period, due to time constraints and availability of modern archival book glue (PVA), which I already have.

 

 

References

Walther, Ingo. Wolf, Norbert. Masterpieces of Illumination: The world’s most beautiful illuminated manuscripts from 400 to 1600; 2005;pg 90-91

https://www.westdean.org.uk/study/school-of-conservation/blog/books-and-library-materials/historical-binding-a-carolingian-cutaway-

modelhttps://travelingscriptorium.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/binding-booklet-2015.pdf

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Mistress Tirzah’s Laurel

I was asked by her Peers to make a Laurel scroll to be presented at Ymir, this past weekend. Evidently Black scrolls are really what really excite her, so Black hours it is.

 

Exemplars

Black Hours of Galeazzo Maria Sforza

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A book of hours is an early Christian devotional book containing psalms and prayers. They are the most common surviving books from the middle ages. Luxury books widely collected in certain wealthy circles in the 15th -16th centuries. Due to the popularity of these richly illustrated books with very wealthy men, several survive.

Uncommonly, in manuscripts are so called Black Hours. So called due to the dyed parchment on which they are written as opposed to any nefarious content. There are seven extant black hours, few in good condition.

Best known and preserved is the Morgan Hours, fully digitized by the Morgan library. Also in fairly good shape, but not digitized is the Horae Beatae Marie Secundum usum curie romane, c 1458, and the Black Hours of Mary of Burgundy, which is not all in this style. Of these few extant pieces, the one that has art that most appeals to me is the Black Hours of Galeazzo Maria Sforza.The book used to be the property of Galeazzo Maria Sforza, the fifth Duke of Milan. It was produced in Bruges, Flanders, probably between 1466 and 1477. Its name derives from its black borders and dark colour scheme, also found in the New York Black Hours, Morgan MS 493, and of a type favoured by the Burgundian court. It is one of about seven surviving black books of hours, all luxury books from the circle of the Burgundian court around this time. It is identified by some with the Black Hours of Charles the Bold that is mentioned in contemporary records, but others disagree.

It measures 25 by 18 centimetres (9.8 in × 7.1 in), has 154 folios and includes 15 full-page miniatures, 24 small-format miniatures, as well as 71 figurative or ornamental initials, and borders with medallions. The illuminations of the book are entirely attributed to the anonymous Master of Anthony of Burgundy. Written in Latin, it follows the Roman liturgy. The text is inscribed in gold and silver, using textus semi-quadratus, a Gothic script.[1]

According to the historian Antoine de Schryver, this manuscript was commissioned by Charles the Bold, duke of Burgundy, and is the one mentioned in the archives of the duke, decorated by the French illuminator Philippe de Mazerolles. This hypothesis is criticized by other historians of art, who consider the Black Hours of Charles the Bold to be mostly lost, with fragments surviving in the Louvre (MI1091) and the Bibliothèque nationale de France (NAL149).[2]

 

Materials

I had a full sheet of Arches cover black paper. I had never worked with it before, but it looked like nice heavy paper.

I got new tubes of Nicker gouache for Christmas. I have several tubs of Fintec, and sheets of gold leaf. There is some Dr pH Martin’s gold Spectralite 18K ink and some pH Martin Silver ink that begs for this use.

Many are the dip pens, pencils, erasers, etc.

 

Procedure

Layout began with math. Lots and lots of math.

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First the calligraphy because it’s easy to mess up and hard to fix.

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Trying out the gouache wash technique
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Blue flowers

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Various procedure photos including the masking fluid tests are in the mosaic.

Masking fluid worked really well for the thin areas that I wanted to keep black, in the cloak, table, and tile floor. Tiny areas of paint have me using fingernails as a pallet. This is why I’m not allowed to use toxic paints.

What I learned?

WEELLL,

Arches cover black is the devil for calligraphy, but takes paint really really well, and is stunningly beautiful.

Arches cover black is too bumpy to be worth “flat” gilding. Raised would probably be awesome.

I like flat gouache better than metallic.

The cut edge of the mat doesn’t particularly want to be gilded, with actual gold leaf, thank you very much.

I very much like this style of scroll.

 

Two Quick Baronial Awards

For the Thrown Weapons champion!

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Johannes von Mittewald- Order of the Defenders of the Stone

For the Brewer.

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Luis Alfonso Villalobos- Order of the defenders of the Stone.

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Both ink on pergamentat, drawn with crow quill, straight nib for calligraphy. Based on woodcut exemplars.

Merewyn’s Opal

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Detail- Bayeux Tapestry

The Scrivener Royal competition for Amos & Kara’s reign was themed Bayeux Tapestry. Due to communications issues the theme announcement was late in coming.

However, I found myself finished with the other things I had due for WOW, and a few days to kill. I obtained a backlog from Mistress Martell, and was given an Opal for a gentle of Nottihill Coill.

I had not met this individual, so facebook stalking ensued. I found out that she was the publisher of their baronial newsletter and a Potterhead.

Needing Bayeux Tapestry theme, I pondered how best to approximate embroidery on paper and settled on colored pencils as the best medium to give me “stitches.”

Exemplar

The Bayeux Tapestry is an embroidered cloth nearly 70 m (230 ft) long and 50 cm (20 in) tall, which depicts the events leading up to the Norman conquest of England concerning William, Duke of Normandy, and Harold, Earl of Wessex, later King of England, and culminating in the Battle of Hastings. It is thought to date to the 11th century, within a few years after the battle. It tells the story from the point of view of the conquering Normans, but is now agreed to have been made in England.

According to Sylvette Lemagnen, conservator of the tapestry, in her 2005 book La Tapisserie de Bayeux:

The cloth consists of some fifty scenes with Latin tituli, embroidered on linen with coloured woollen yarns. It is likely that it was commissioned by Bishop Odo, William’s half-brother, and made in England—not Bayeux—in the 1070s. In 1729 the hanging was rediscovered by scholars at a time when it was being displayed annually in Bayeux Cathedral. The tapestry is now exhibited at the Musée de la Tapisserie de Bayeux in Bayeux, Normandy, France.

Process

So I got to laying it out, and the size got silly.

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Happy with my layout I transferred it to pergamenata.img_1192.jpgimg_1193.jpgIMG_1195

I laid the text in one letter at a time. By which I mean, I wrote every ‘E’ and then every ‘A.’ I decided to do it in this fashion because the stitched text on the exemplar is pretty uneven, and I didn’t want to accidentally become too regular in writing words. The stitching was used as the ductus.img_1196.jpg

Left to right I started to draw. Also, generic people are really boring, and I can’t help myself, I really, really love including Duke Cuan wherever I can.img_1197.jpg

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Their Excellencies Notinghill Coill, Lucian and Brig
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Dame Morwenna and Master Cian. Dame Morwenna points out that this will be the only time when she and Cian are of a size.
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Merewyn Sharpe, based on FB images of her garb
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The Whomping Willow- because Potter

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I was really pleased with how this came out, the pencil did approximate stitches well. I wouldn’t have thought to do a scroll with pencil otherwise.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bayeux_Tapestry

Mistress Emma’s Pelican!

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Exemplar- 1920s but very medieval feeling

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In the two weeks before Twelfth Night I got a plea from the Scrivner Royal. A Pelican scroll destined for the event had been damaged. Could I help?

I wasn’t going to the event. I had never met the recipient, and knew nothing about her, but I was on the first of a 3 day stretch off of work with my husband out of town. Challenge accepted.

Knowing nothing about the recipient, I focused on the theme of the event, Il Palio horse race.

The Palio di Siena is a horse race that is held twice each year, on 2 July and 16 August, in Siena, Italy. Ten horses and riders, bareback and dressed in the appropriate colours, represent ten of the seventeen contrade, or city wards. The Palio held on 2 July is named Palio di Provenzano, in honour of the Madonna of Provenzano, a Marian devotion particular to Siena which developed around an icon from the Terzo Camollia. The Palio held on 16 August is named Palio dell’Assunta, in honour of the Assumption of Mary.

A pageant, the Corteo Storico, precedes the race, which attracts visitors and spectators from around the world.

The race itself, in which the jockeys ride bareback, circles the Piazza del Campo, on which a thick layer of dirt has been laid. The race is run for three laps of the piazza and usually lasts no more than 90 seconds. It is common for a few of the jockeys to be thrown off their horses while making the treacherous turns in the piazza, and indeed, it is not unusual to see riderless horses finishing the race.

Words

Prithee come forward, all, and know that We Amos, by right of arms King of Atlantia, and Kara, by grace, inspiration and beauty, Queen of Atlantia do bid greetings to all and sundry. After appropriate consideration of her selfless and tireless efforts to better Our realm and its populace, We hereby and forthwith induct the good and worthy
                     Emma West
as a companion of the most noble Order of the Pelican and elevate her to the peerage of Our Kingdom.
Further We do award her the sole and exclusive right to bear the following arms by Letters Patent: Or, on a pale nebuly vert three oak leaves Or.
Given by Our hand this Thirteenth day of January, Anno Societatis LII at Our Twelfth Night

 

The Scroll

Chocolate brown ink on pergamenata. Large features light boxed onto the pergamenata to maintain scale, but given the linoleum-cut feeling of the original, the details were all freehand.

To improve the flow and verisimilitude, I pled to the SCA internet for someone to translate my words into Italian. They obliged.

The exemplar was used as a ductus for the text. Dates were replaced with the appropriate event dates.

Her arms fit in beautifully with the layout, and were provided with augmentation by Baron Wulfstan.

And since I couldn’t bring myself to leave it without gilding, I added just a little bit of pH Martin’s gold to the border.  I then cut a mat to fit a frame I had as a donation.

3 days later I delivered the finished scroll to be taken to the event, where she was given both scrolls, with apologies for the damage to the original scroll, which was beautiful, and she treasured.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palio_di_Siena

Tales of Beadle the Bard

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When my baby brother told me they were pregnant I decided that the Potterhead parents needed something neat for the baby. This took me from the Father’s day announcement of the pregnancy, until Lilly was just over a year old.

 

Tales of Beadle the Bard, per the description in the published J.K. Rowling book dates to the 14th century. So I decided Fraktur, which I have some facility with would be the hand. I spent a certain amount of time getting everything together, and just when I was ready to start I had a penny drop- In canon, the book is written in RUNES! Now, I know that runes were not used by the Danes to write in books. Totally not a thing as far as we are aware, but cannon is cannon. So then I had to spend 6 months with a translator program going through the book and transliterating it into Elder Futhark. Yes Elder. Why? Because I translation engine exists on the internet.

Runes are depiction of phonemes, so I just used the English words and put them through the translator.  Deciding to write a book and bind it was crazy enough without trying to find a Danish copy to deal with.

Once translated I decided that the book would be a copy of the book that Dumbledore gives Hermione, in which she has added an English translation on the verso.IMG_1258IMG_1336IMG_1345

Many, many months later I was ready to bind the choirs. John Neal Books and the internet were very instructive.  I hand sewed with linen thread.IMG_1414

I used a scrap of garment weight leather for the cover, which is described in the book as being nondescript, in spite of the movie picturing it with a cloth cover and a woodcut on the front.IMG_1415IMG_1416IMG_1417

I presented this to my brother at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and got on of the “students” to deliver Lilly’s “owl post” while we had lunch in the great hall.