Print Medieval Books Reading Comprehension with Fifth Grade Work
Print Medieval Books Reading Comprehension with Sixth Grade Work
Print Medieval Books Reading Comprehension
||edHelper's suggested reading level:
||grades 5 to 7
||Flesch-Kincaid grade level:
||scholarly, scribe, penmanship, scribes, medieval, monastery, literature, original, well-known, pointed, various, writing, parchment, design, skilled, obsolete
By Sharon Fabian
1 Making copies of a book today is not a big deal. Thousands or even millions of copies can be made almost as easily as one copy.
2 Making even one copy of a book in the Middle Ages, however, was a very big deal. It required the work of skilled craftsmen working for as long as a year to make just one copy.
3 Books in the Middle Ages were usually made of parchment. Parchment is animal skin, and it had to be prepared before it could be used to make a book. First, the skin was cleaned and soaked in lime. Then it was stretched on a frame to dry.
4 A scribe who wanted to copy a book would buy this dried parchment. Then he would cut it into the right shapes and sizes for the pages. Next each page would be carefully lined. First, small dots would be poked along both sides of the page to space the lines evenly. Then, the lines would be ruled with a pointed stick.
5 To begin his work, the scribe would need a pot of ink and a sharpened quill pen. He used black or brown ink. Sometimes the ink was made from carbon soot from candles, sometimes from other materials. Various fonts, or letter styles, were in use at various times, and the scribe needed to know his letter style well and have good penmanship. He also needed to be a good reader and have good eyesight; sometimes it must have been hard to figure out the handwriting that he was trying to copy. Scribes needed to know Latin too, since it was the language of scholarly writing.
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