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Scribal Arts

Hirsch von Henford, Order of the Leaf of Merit

Full Scroll






Hirsch von Henford, Order of the Leaf of Merit Scroll
Calligraphy and Illumination by Madelaine de Bourgogne

Photo and Contribution
by Hirsch von Henford

This scroll was done as a barter with Mistress Madelaine. The agreement was made when she was Baroness of Ynys Fawr and visiting the central part of the Kingdom (when Lochac was still part of the West). I made a Pelican/Laurel award token for her, and she made this scroll. The token was sent to an event in Lochac with Brocc of Alderden, who was kind enough to find Madelaine at the event (most likely Rowany, but I don't recall) and give it to her. The scroll got lost in her stack of "things to do", but she recently finished it, and it was well worth the wait.

The scroll has not been signed and sealed because of some problems in the text that combined were not fixable: The name has a slight misspelling; the royalty and date of the award are incorrect (they are the date and Royalty of my Rose Leaf) ... However, the scroll is so nice that I didn't want to "send it back", and have accepted it as my official Leaf of Merit scroll. It will get framed and placed on the wall in the near future. Madelaine sent a note with the scroll which I am quoting below. -- Hirsch von Henford

Unto Maestro Hirsch von Henford
does Baroness Madelaine de Bourgogne send fair greetings.

At last, after frustrated attempts that went nowhere (years ago) this scroll is done! It has been fun to do, in the end, I admit. So I thought I would jot down a few notes on research and sources of inspiration for your edification. Oh, and just so you know -- I always wear the medallion you made me when I am in garb. I pass OL and OP medallions on when they are Kingdom issue (to new Peers) but I treasure this medallion and never will part with it. This scroll is made with that sentiment in mind, that might hopefully recompense for the medallion beyond our agreement - not sure if I am expressing myself adequately here, I hope you aren't too puzzled by my words. So onward ...

Firstly I had a look at your website to re-aquaint myself with your device and see if anything else was apparent that I could personalize the scroll to you, with. I was glad to find a couple of pics of yourself at events. Then I looked at the scrolls on the West Scribes' site to make sure I did not duplicate a layout of any scrolls I could find attributed to you (as recipient).

Researching the Gothic style would seem simple, but there are so many variations! I settled on a blackletter alphabet I found in Whalley's "The Art of Calligrphy", (Bloomsbury Books 1980, ISBN 0-906223-64-4) pg. 60 (Ms Rawl Liturg e40, f.40) showing an excerpt from a French mss of private devoctions, last quarter of C 14th.

Using your device, I made a few variations of the capital incorporating a stag and settled on the most realistic rendition, but I love diapering and tiling so I wanted to do more than an illuminated capital. So the main illumination was inspired by a miniature from the "Crhornicle of Jan de Wavrin" which depicts the artist - Jan - presenting a copy of his book to King Edward IV, which I thought was a lovely little conceit, and used it as a base for the illumination showing yourself receiving honors from Radnor and Esmirelda. I found a photo of Radnor and Esmirelda from their de-vestiture, so hopefully the likeness works. (See Anderson's "Illuminated Manuscripts", TODRI Book Pub., 1999, ISBN 1-57717-155-1, pg. 123.) As for the surrounds, I took inspiration from the framework and marginalia style in the two pps. of the Hours of Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, c. 1370. "Annunciation" f. 13v, and "Angels and SHepherds" f. 199. (See Harthan's "The Book of Hours", Park Lane pub., 1982, ISBN 0-517-36944-3, pps 94 & 95.) Enjoy! -- Madelaine de Bourgogne

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The West Kingdom History Website was created by and is maintained by Hirsch von Henford (mka Ken Mayer).