600-Year-Old Penmanship

I was looking at Wikipedia earlier, and this was cited as a reference. As in, the contents of one of the paragraphs was mentioned in a footnote. (Follow the link, else the rest of the post won’t make sense)

I promise you it’s nothing to do with Lord Of The Rings.

Trying to make out what the letters are, I’m not entirely convinced that the image isn’t mirrored.

In actuality, this is a 15th century English legal document. The “Plea Rolls of the Court of Common Pleas”, if you please. Some words look like they could be English words, but that could just be wishful thinking. The rest, no amount of staring, squinting, or head-tilting seems to be helping me. It could be C15th English, but who knows, it could be Latin or whatever else the lingua franca might have been.

Sounds like I’m complaining, but I’m not. I might be taking the mick a bit, but I can’t exactly fault a 15th Century court recorder for writing in 15th Century style. And illegible as the writing might be to me, it’s got a pretty cool fancy style.

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