This App Helps You Decipher Medieval Handwriting

Shaunacy Ferro

Need some help reading through medieval books? There’s an app for that.

To the uninitiated, medieval books might as well be written in hieroglyphs because the handwriting looks so unfamiliar. Medieval Handwriting is designed to remedy that problem. Developed for the University of Leeds’ Medieval Studies Department, the app provides exercises and context to help young scholars decipher original texts created by writers from the 12th through 15th centuries.

The app, available for iOS and Android, contains a selection of scans from 26 centuries-old books, along with some background on their design. Transcription exercises help buff up your reading skills and a table of letter forms shows all the different ways letters were drawn. You can check your work against full transcriptions within the app.

[h/t: Hyperallergic]

All images courtesy Medieval Handwriting