Η Ελληνική γραφή κατά την περίοδο της Ρωμανίας (Βυζάντιο)
Greek Letter Forms
Letter Forms in Literary Papyri(to 8th century)
Letter Forms in Uncial Manuscripts
Letter Forms in Minuscule Manuscripts (from 9th Century)
Greek Letter Combinations (ligatures, etc.)
By ligatures are meant combinations of letters made for the sake of writing rather than the meaning of a word or words. For those see the separate Greek Abbreviations file.
Ligatures: Usual combinations of Minuscule letters
These ligatures were made according to set rules, which were almost always followed in early minuscule MSS
Ligatures: Combinations of letters in later minuscule MSS
As uncial letter forms were mixed in with pure minuscule (for instance beta, kappa, pi), ligatures were created using both forms
Ligatures: Combinations of letters by superposition
In some case super-positioning (placing one letter above another) created yet more new forms.
Source: Bernhard Abraham van Groningen, Short Manual of Greek Palaeography, (Leiden: 1940)
By abbreviations here are meant combinations of letters made for the sake of the meaning of a word or words rather than for the purpose of rapid writing. For those see the separate Greek Letter Combinations file. Not included here is any listing of «standard» abbreviations, when for instance the conclusion of a word is omitted, or prepositions are given by one or two letters.
Abbreviations could be made in a number of ways. The following tables present variations using the following methods:
- Superposition: placing of one or more letters are above others.
- Combination: intertwining letters with each other
- Suspension: omitting the end of a word.
- Contraction: omitting the middle part of a word. (Very common in nomina sacra)
- Symbols: using a symbol with no connection to usual letter forms.
- "Deformed letters": using a variety of symbols, some from shorthand. Common at the end of words.
Two ore more of these methods might be used in one abbreviation.
Abbreviations: through suspension together with superposition or combination
Abbreviations: through contraction together with superposition, suspension or combination
Nomina Sacra: names or titles of sacred figures, usually through contraction
Monograms: combinations and superpositions of letters to create distinctive name-symbols
Abbreviations: from deformation of letters or tachygraphy
Source: Bernhard Abraham van Groningen,
Short Manual of Greek Palaeography, (Leiden: 1940)