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Uncial Journey


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Hello! I am still practicing my hand at an Uncial letter form. This thread will be my attempts at this. I strive to have this as my everyday writing. Hopefully this thread will be updated regularly...


I felt like sharing a nonsense pseudo review. Your thoughts, opinions, and even your own Uncial hand are greatly appreciated! ^o^ Sorry my hand isn't steady yet...


Written with a Sheaffer...No Nonsense... pen with Medium nib. Old brown ink cartridge dating before my birth. Staples Legal Pad. (I grab what I can...)


Note that I posted this picture about a week after I wrote. I now have the mentioned nib I was missing!


Forgive my horrible scanner quality...


Edited by Grayhart
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Here's another that I wrote a couple weeks ago... Honestly, I have no clue what I write sometimes... I just write. Maybe I should work on that.


Written at a cafe with a Manuscript Beginner's Calligraphy.


Edited by Grayhart
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Congrats on trying something different. Everyone seems to want to write italic or copperplate/spencerian script. I have been playing around with uncial for while now. Your second sample illustrates that it looks better with an italic nib to add a bit of line variation. I was disappointed with the alphabets in books because they included medern shapes of the letters b,d, r etc. Trial and error has produced what I think looks more uniform in shape and suitably dated. This type of lettering followed Roman capitals but predates italic and cursive. I will scan samples of majiscule and miniscule alphabets for your consideration. Keep up the good work!


PS using a 1.1 italic is sufficient because a 1.5 or 1.9 nib would necessitate larger letters. One advantage of this style of lettering is its compactness.


The sample was done with a Lamy 1.1 italic nib on Clairefontain french grid paper. I always put the u next to the q when doing alphabets because that's the words are spelt.


Edited by barleycorn
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Oh, you're right with some of the letters! I always felt they were off when I wrote them. Especially when I started reverting to Gothic from my drafting days (in middle school) by accident! DX


Your example is very nice! I'll try to incorporate your style into mine. One question though...Did the alphabet originally have lowercase letters?


Thank you for your advice and example!

Edited by Grayhart
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Hmmm...traditional uncial lettering is usually just capitals. There is a half uncial which is mix of uncial and roman "cursive" sometimes referred to as insular. The infamous Book of Kells gospels was written in this style - in latin of course being the 9th century. Lower case letters are relatively modern as the original Roman lettering was all capitals.




I like that the letters are mostly based on the circular shape which gives it a uniformity when doing a page at a time.

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Ah, I think I like majuscule Uncial the most. I agree, the roundness of each character makes the writing unique from other alphabets.

I referenced your example to write the page in the attached picture. It definitely looks much more unique than before. My hand still isn't as steady as I'd like it to give uniformity with the letters (because of too much coffee at the cafe), but here's some progress...


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Looks good! You are doing well at keeping the height of the letters consistent without a reference line. Also the ascenders (heads) and descenders (tails) of the letters are short and precise. Please try to zoom in a llittle more next time to see the details better.

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