Medieval Writing
The History of t

The letter t is generally one of the less problematic ones. It may be tall with the crossbar partway up the vertical, or it may be short with a broad crossbar at the top, but it generally does not display too many eccentric forms.

square capital T In the Old Roman square capitals, T has the familiar simple angular form
rustic capital T In the rustic capital script, T has acquired a foot, and the horizontal and vertical lines show a slight curve.
uncialT The uncial T has an assymetrical crossbar with a curl at one end and a fine foot.
New Roman cursive t In this example of New Roman cursive, the minuscule t is short, comprising a curl surmounted by a broad crossbar.
In the pre-Carolingian minuscule scripts or National Hands, t is short with a curled lower section and a broad crossbar. A tricky form found in some scripts has a closed loop on the back, making it easy to confuse with a.
half uncialt In a 6th century half uncial script t is short and broad.
Corbie ab t In the specialised book script Corbie ab t has a loop on its back.
oldItalian t An old northern Italian book hand of the 8th century displays the simple broad t.
Germanic t This sample of t from Merovingian minuscule or Germanic book hand has the curl at the base coming up to meet the crossbar, forming a closed letter.
Luxeuil t This t from the variant of Merovingian minuscule known as Luxeuil minuscule has a small loop on the back.
Visigothic t The Visigothic script has produced a t with a large closed loop at the back.
insular half uncial t The letter t in the formal script known as known as insular half uncial has a particularly long crossbar.
insular minuscule t This 10th century example of t from insular minuscule is also short and very wide.
Beneventan t In this example from a developed form of Beneventan minuscule the letter t has a large closed loop at the back.
In Merovingian chancery script the letter t has a small closed loop on its back.
old curialis t In the old curialis of the papal chancery the lower loop of t comes right around to form a closed loop at the bottom.

In Carolingian book hands t remains short and wide. This simple form takes over in the document hands of the period. Extraneous loops disappear.

Caroline minuscule t In this version of Caroline minuscule, t is a simple, short, curved letter with a wide crossbar.
Caroline minuscule t A sample from a forged 12th century monastic charter is the same.
later curialis t The later papal curialis of the 11th century retains the closed lower loop of its predecessor on the letter t.
papal t By the 12th century the diplomatic minuscule of the papal chancery has adopted the simple, short, open, broad t.
imperial t The 12th century diplomatic minuscule of the Imperial German chancery has produced an entirely similar t. There are no strange wiggly elaborations.
In the formal Gothic book hands, the letter t tends to grow taller, so that the vertical extends above the crossbar.
protogothic t This protogothic t from a 12th century French book hand has a wide crossbar, but the vertical extends just above it. The base forms a broad curve.
Gothic rotunda t The 14th century Gothic rotunda version of the letter t is similar in general form.
textura t This 13th century Gothic textura t of medium grade is short and does not extend above the crossbar.
prescissa t The very formal Gothic prescissa has a very narrow and angular t which extends above the crossbar and has a blocky foot at the base rather than a curve.
textura t A relatively informally written late 15th or early 16th Gothic textura script has a taller and narrower t with only a slight curve and a hairline foot at the base.
textura t A 15th century Dutch language formal Gothic textura t is rather more angular than the above, but essentially similar.
In document hands and later cursive scripts, t generally does not cause too many difficulties.
more about t
Histories of Individual Letters

History of Scripts
What is Paleography?

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