Documentation of Various Slavonic Letter Forms:
Miscellaneous Images

A. Variations of the Letter "O"

Lower case letter forms:

1) initial (round, standard width; either with decorative “knobs” or without)
2) round (standard width)
3) narrow (space-saving; used with and without diacritical marks)

i. In the first row of letters: Initial capital O often had the distinctive “knobs” on the top and bottom of the round O, even in sources which did not have the “knobs” in the lower case form (the current form); a narrower capital O (0, without “knobs”) was always used with displaying capital forms of “0y” and “0Y” (see "Uk" below). The second set of letters is the standard "round O", which typically was used in medial and final positions when a diacritical mark was used. The small "narrow on" was used in medial and final positions when no diacritical mark was used. However, in the first century of book printing, there was no strict adherence to this rule, and there is ample documentation demonstrating the "narrow on" with diacritical marks; there are no known examples of the "narrow on" used in initial position. In the majority of circumstances where a letter titlo is placed over an “o”, the “round o” was generally used, regardless of usage elsewhere (although there are many exceptions to this practice found in early printed books); the “round o” was preferred because it provides sufficient width for displaying abbreviated superscript letters.

ii. In the second and third rows of letters, these forms were used with very specific words, as documented elsewhere.

on.png

omega.png – The forms of this letter include the standard "omega", a wide version which is use for foreign (usually Hebrew and Greek) personal and place names, the letter "ot", the upper and lower case exclamatory "O!", and a medium sized "O!" (a disctinctive variant which has a grave accent instead of a "pokrytie over it) which is found in many printed editions of the first century of printed books.

potrebnik_3.gif – from the Velikii Potrebnik, Moscow, 1625, printed under Patriarch Joseph (page unidentified) – example of the letter "O!" (medium size)

potrebnik_4.gif – from the Velikii Potrebnik, Moscow, 1625, printed under Patriarch Joseph (page unidentified) – example of the letter "O!" (small size)

potrebnik_5.gif – from the Velikii Potrebnik, Moscow, 1625, printed under Patriarch Joseph (page unidentified) – example of the letter "O!" (medium size)

potrebnik_6.gif – from the Velikii Potrebnik, Moscow, 1625, printed under Patriarch Joseph (page unidentified) – example of the letter "O!" (medium and small size)


B. "Uk" and "Ik" (the letter "u")

uk.png – The upper case form uses a narrower round O than the form used in initial position. In traditional sources where color is used in printing, the "O" is printed in red and the "y" is in black (same for the lower case form); this means that the letter should be typeset as two separate characters instead of as a single composite character (as was done in earlier versions of Unicode). Lower case “оу” (used in modern Slavonic exclusively in initial position, but in pre-Nikonian sources used occasionally in all positions) always (without exception) used a lower case narrow “о” in its formation.


C. Dobro

The lower case letter "d" provides us with a bit of a quandry. In early printed sources using the Poluustav script, the lower case "d" had long "legs" as the standard default form, and a short-legged variant was often used to avoid character collisions between two lines of text when diacritical marks or titla made spacing awkward. However, after the transition to Synodal Era typography, the short-legged form became the standard form and the long-legged form was abandoned. This creates a problem for Unicode character encoding because now we have to work with two separate "definitions" of the correct shape of the letter "d", each dependent on the era of the text being reproduced. If we determine that the short-legged form (common to all eras) is properly located at U+0434, then we have to find a way to encode the long-legged form (which is an inconvenience for typesetters, but certainly the more logical solution). However, if we determine that the long-legged form is the default form, then Synodal Era texts will always have to choose the alternate form as the default "d", which is an extremely illogical situation. Of course, the default form could be determined by the individual type designer, but the matter of having precision typography would be ignored, which would be quite unfortunate for scholars.

dobro.png

d_dd_alt.gif – from the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius (page unidentified). Notice the random alternation of the short- and long-legged forms in this edition. (This alternation was somewhat traditional in the spelling of the name of King David.)


D. Izhe Titlo

dsc02094.gif – source unidentified (possibly the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius), page 66.

izhe_titlo_1.gif – These three examples are from the musical "Irmologii", Lvov, 1709 (pages unidentified).

izhe_titlo_2.gif

izhe_titlo_3.gif

lunoe_techenie.gif – This example is from the calendar printed in the back of the "Ustav o molitve domashnei", printed in Moscow in 1910 (Preobrazhenskii Bogodelnyi Dom)

tit_izhitsa_dieresis.gif – This demonstrates the Synodal Era form, where the two "hatch marks" appear more like a "double grave accent" than the izhe-titlo. (Notice that the lines are arranged horizontally, as opposed to the more traditional diagonal arrangement.)

Ustav_syrnikov.gif – From "Ключ к церковному уставу", Moscow, 1910. Edited bu N. Synikov. Page unidentified.

z5_kn3big.gif – source unidentified (possibly the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius). Notice the "D-O" letter titlo in the chapter title(!).


E. Dobro-Izhe Titlo

324-0168.png – This manuscript is from Trinity Lavra – FOND 304.I MAIN, manuscript 324.

Ev1575.jpg – This is from the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius (page unidentified).

Picture_2.jpg – This is from the Anonymous Tipografiia: Triod' Postnaia – 1555-56 (page unidentified).

sol_big045.jpg – Evangelie manuscript, source unidentified.


F. Paerok (alternate form of the "erok")

paerok.gif

paerok_samples.gif – These three examples are from the musical "Irmologii", Lvov, 1709 (pages unidentified).

Picture_1.jpg – source unidentified, but obviously of southwestern Russian origin.

While this is clearly a Poluustav typeface, it has many non-Muscovite features which are typical of Kievan Poluustav, including: the large "S" (fourth line), the large omega (2 lines from the end, last word), the use of the Vrakhia in the next of the last line (see also the following character below), the "bolshoi yus" (second line), the predominant use of the "tailed Z", the alternate form of the lower case letter "t" (first line, second word, and elsewhere), use of round and narrow "on" (see line 8, wwhere the narrow "on" has a grave stress), non-Muscovite placement of accents (2nd word of the 3rd line), hyphens, and base-line capitals (as opposed to descender capitals.

One of the most notable fetures of this source is the switched values of the "erok" and "paerok". In mainstream (Muscovite) usage, the "erok" (see the last word of line 6, and the 3rd word of line 5) replaces the "hard sign" (ъ). However, in this source the "erok" is used to replace the soft sign (ь), while the "paerok" (see the two circled examples) replaces the hard sign. This causes problems for displaying texts accurately using Unicode.


G. Vrakhia (used for indicating marginalia, such as alternate readings or comments; see also the previous image)

vrakhia.gif

potrebnik_2a.gif – from the Velikii Potrebnik, Moscow, 1625, printed under Patriarch Joseph (page unidentified)


H. Large S

large_esse.jpg – This is from the Anonymous Tipografiia: Triod' Postnaia – 1555-56 (page unidentified).


I. Titla - Miscellaneous

tit_obshe_small_1.gif – a demonstration of the General Titlo balanced (centered) over a single character.

tit_obshe_small_2.gif – a demonstration of the General Titlo balanced (centered) over two characters.

bulgarskie_titly.gif – source unidentified (unfortunately); possibly from the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius. The replaced letters are shown in red.

ostermanovskii.jpg – source manuscript: Ostermanovskii litsevoi khronograf, 16th c., page 789. This source has several distinctive features, including alternate letter forms.

russ12.jpg – title page of "Dioptra", Kuteino, 1651. Notice the titlo in the middle of line 6; in this case it replaces the letter "я" (see the following image).

tit_a_sample2.gif – from the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius. The replaced letters are shown in red. In these examples, the same letter titlo replaces either the letter "а" or "я", depending on orthographic usage.

tit_e_samples.gif – from the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius. The titlo "е".


J. Ligatures - Miscellaneous

Evangelie_1553_Vilius_p388.jpg – ligature for the expression "от Луки"

stv.gif – from the Evangelie of 1575, Vilnius. Ligature for the combination "тв".

pg_408_GramSmotricki.jpg – from the Gramatika of Smotritskii, page unidentified. Ligature for the combination "тв".


K. Scripture Markers (used to separate verses and subsections in books of the Scriptures: Evangelie, Apostol and Psaltir; derived from the manuscript tradition)

scripture_markers.png

(See HERE for examples.)