Documentation of Archaic Characters
Found in Early Printed Church Slavonic Books

Nikita Simmons, July 2013 — WORK IN PROGRESS (Vilnius and Kiev remain to be finished)

KEY:

Initial/Medial vowel forms:

о/о1 was used in all positions (no ѻ); е/є was used in all positions. Standardization was later introduced in the Moscow Printing Court; the “wide O” was likewise introduced in the Moscow Printing Court, sometime in the 1640's, as far as I can observe.

Character variants:

д1 = long-legged д
о1 = narrow о
с1 = wide с
т1 = Tall т
т2 = 3-masted т
у1 = digraph v over o (variant of ѹ/ꙋ) [not yet included in Unicode proposals]
ъ1 = Tall ъ
ѣ1 = Tall ѣ

Ornamental Punctation:

≁ (Not Tilte, U+2241)
— (Reversed Not Tilde) [not yet included in Unicode proposal, possibly a variant of the Spear)

 
sample
initial / medial
vowel forms
character
variants
letter
titla
unusual
ligatures
archaic
diacritics
ornamental
punctuation
Анонимная типография, Москва
————

1553-54 - Четвероевангелие узкошрифтное
1558 - Четвероевангелие среднешрифтное (reprint, with minor changes)
— These editions lack pagination (page numbers). The typeface is large throughout, typical of Gospels books placed on altars. This book has an additional medial case (or small upper case), as well as a standard upper case.

sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
sample-4
о/о1 in all positions (no ѻ); е/є in all positions
т1, ѣ1, ъ1
с1, о1, ꙩ, ꙫ, ꚙ, ꚛ
иꙵ,
д-и титло (оⷣꙵ)
л-у
(Лука)
дв̏ѣ
: ≁
(see here)

1555-56 - Триодь Постная
— Pagination is used. The typeface is a normal size, having a very “chiseled” look which is striking to look at. This book has an additional medial case (or small upper case), as well as a standard upper case. There is very little space used between words, and frequently there is no word division at all. Oddly, there is very little use of diacritical marks, with only a few accent marks per page. Letter titla are used more in this publication than in the other works of this Typographia. The paerok (ꙿ) is used as the titlo form of the hard sign, as opposed to the erok (ⸯ); this is typical of the West Slavic recension of Church Slavonic. This book has a reversed version of the ornamental punctuation (shaped like a reversed tilde ∽, but with a small line through it), not available in Unicode. This book also has a variant of the letter ‘р’, with a truncated tail (no descender), which has not previously been identified as a variant (see page 246, 5th line up from bottom); its use is superfluous, since the lines of text are spaced wide apart.

sample-1
sample-2
"
ꙫ, Ꙍ̓̀ (medial)
"
а-у
(Аллилуия)
дв̏ѣ,
си̏рѣчь,
: ≁
(reversed character, see here)
1564-65 - Псалтырь широкошрифтная
— This book lacks pagination. It uses a large-style typeface that is strikingly different from the other editions, with more “serifs” than is typical of the poluustav style, while looking like it was executed by hand. Unlike other publications of the Anonymous Typographia, there is no medial case used in this book. Periods and commas are elevated to the middle of the lower case height; there is a distinction between a full stop (a final period using a heavy dot) and a semi-stop (a medial period using a small dot). The erok (ⸯ) is used for the superscript hard sign, instead of the paerok, and no character variants (or other unusual features) are used at all. The style of language has fewer archaicisms than the other publications of this Typographia, and it seems to be closer to the literary style that Ivan Fedorov later used. Unlike the Triod postnaia, this book has a consistent use of diacritical marks, but the word spacing is inconsistent.
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
"
Other remarks: For numbers, the thousands mark is attached to the letter. The text in all these editions has many archaic qualities not typical of the received Muscovite recension of Church Slavonic, particularly in the use of the hard sign instead of the letter ‘o’. The long-legged ‘d’ is not not used in these publications. Lines of text are spaced well apart from each other, with very little character truncation, such as we see in most other publishers.
Иван Федоров
1564 - Апостол, Moscow
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1565 - Часовник, Moscow
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1569 - Евангелие, Zabludov
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1570 - Псалтырь, Zabludov
— (my work copy is incomplete)
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1574 - Азбука, Lvov
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1574 - Апостол, Lvov
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1577 - Псалтырь, Ostrog
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1578 - Азбука, Ostrog
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
sample-4
1580 - Новый завет и псалтырь, Ostrog
sample-1
sample-2
1581 - Библия, Ostrog
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
Other remarks: To come. See also: Ivan Fedorov’s Typefaces
Вильна (Вильнюс), Типография Л. Мамонича
1575 - Евангелие
sample-1
sample-2
1583 - Служебник
sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
1595 - Евангелие учительное
sample-1
sample-2
1596 - Граматика словеньска. Лаврентій Зизаний.
1596 - Лексис. Лаврентій Зизаний.
1619 - Грамматика. Смотрицкий Мелетий Герасимович.
Острог, Василий Суражский

1594 - Василий Великий. Книга о постничестве. (information)
— This book was printed with the large altar-Gospel size typeface, which is striking for its elegant artistic quality. The typographical details (including titla) and style of language are basically the same as the Vilnius publications (especially the 1575 Evangelie). The Slavonic has many archaicisms. Word spacing is inconsistent (in some places the spacing is very obvious, while in other places it is not inserted at all). In the few number of pages available to me, the only variant character that I saw is the ‘long-legged d’. Page numbers are not used.

sample-1
sample-2
sample-3
о/о1 in all positions; е in all positions (no ѻ, є)
д1
иꙵ, etc.
(diverse)
но̑, тъꙵ
Рохманово
1619 - Евангелие учительное (Кирилл Траквилион)
— The text, written by Kirill Tranquilion, is more Belorussian than Church Slavonic, although it also uses many Slavonic archaicisms, including the letter ѫ (big yus). This book uses many features (including letter titla) also found in the Vilnius Gospel, suggesting a significant influence. The paerok and erok are used interchangeably, although the paerok is predominant.
initial ѻ; о/о1 in medial and final positions; е/є have modern usage
т1, с1, о1, ѫ
a titlo,
e titlo,
иꙵ
–̑ (kamora) is used extensively
Киев, Типиграфия Печерской Лавры
1617 - Часослов
1619 - Анфологион
1623 - Беседы на 14 посланий Святого Апостола Павла. (Златоуст)
1624 - Беседы на деяния Святых Апостол. (Златоуст)
1627 - Буквар. Тимофій Вербицький.
1627 - Лексикон славеноросский. Памва Берында.
1629 - Октоих Воскресный
1628 - Преподобный авва Дорофей, Поучения.
1643 - Псалтырь
1646 - Требник Петра Могилы
Львов
1642 - Триодь цветная
— The introduction to this book (see sample 1) was written in Belorussion, as opposed to Church Slavonic. The letter ґ is found in the introduction (only) in Greek roots and loan words. The ‘wide с’ (с1) s used extensively. This book uses a lot of engraved decorations and iconographic images (with obvious western European influence), which the Muscovite editions only adopted after the reforms of Patriarch Nikon and the importing of book culture from southwestern Russia. Catital letter forms are used extensively, in the modern style (including proper nouns). In paragraphs using a small typeface, many features are seen which Ivan Fedorov used in his Ostrog Bible script (particularly the shapes of ѣ and ъ). The letter ꙁ is prefered over з, although they are sometimes used interchangeably. The variant у1 is used (sample), which is found in the Vilnius editions for the same word (учители). The paerok is used for the superscript hard sign.
sample-1
sample-2
initial ѻ; о/о1 in medial and final positions; е/є have modern usage
ґ, т1, т2, с1, о1, у1
nothing unusual
т-в ligature
т-р ligature
: . (3-dot period)
Кутейн (Кутейно, Кутейнский монастырь)
1650 - Псалтырь
— The paerok (ꙿ) is used as the titlo form of the hard sign, as opposed to the erok (ⸯ), in typical West Slavonic fashion. Capital letters are used for proper nouns. The style of language is much more modern, with fewer archaicisms in the spelling. The letter ꙁ is not used at all, but only ‘з’. Page numbers are used in the upper right corner of the recto page (not the verso page).
о & є in initial positions;
о/о1 & е in medial positions (no ѻ)
д1
иꙵ, etc.
(diverse)
1656 - Октоих воскресный
— The letter ‘ґ’ was used on the title page (only) in a Greek loan word, and the introduction is in Belorussian, not Church Slavonic. The letter ꙁ is prefered over з, although they are sometimes used interchangeably. Otherwise, the typographical details are the same as the Psalter. Page numbers are used in the upper right corner of the recto page (not the verso page), and border lines are placed around the text on every page, a western printing feature which was heavily used from this time forward in the Nikonian and Kievan publications.
"
ґ, д1
иꙵ, etc.
(diverse)