The Transformation of Text and Words

It was interesting to read Carr’s history of the written word. I don’t often think of how books were presented before my time, which is weird considering I’ve taken both Latin and a middle English course. Dr. Fleming would advocate the study of older texts. It’s just funny to read about what you’ve put into application. I’ve read Chaucer in his original middle English. I’ve read poetry by Catullus and some excerpts from Caesar’s musings. I’ve even read some of Cicero’s orations. They all hurt my brain. So, while I was reading some of the history that Carr presents, I thought back to my first year of Latin, when the sentences were easy to understand and had spaces between the words. All Latin textbooks now have spaces between the words. But way back when, they didn’t have spaces and, unlike “Latin for babies” as Dr. Fleming likes to call it, the sentences were complex and difficult to understand after one read through. I found some pictures on the interwebs that display what I’m getting at here. Most were obviously done by scribes. One piece is from Chaucer’s work. The rest is the different “shades” of Latin. Enjoy.



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One Response to The Transformation of Text and Words

  1. angiegrose says:

    This type of writing would drive me insane, it would send my brain into overtime. I have a really hard time with any kind of poetry or foreign language, so mumbling it all together with no punctuation for me to have to decipher would just be to much for me. I am very thankful for punctuation and spaces between our words.

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