Lexicon Browse - B

Backdrawing - A drawing to guide layout or to establish a design, drawn on the back of the leaf to be painted and traced by the painter with the aid of backlighting.Backing - see SpineBacklighting - A technique used in tracing a drawing from one side of a leaf to the other by placing a strong light source on the other side of the leaf being illuminated and a weaker light source behind the artist ...Bands - see CordsBar - The horizontal stroke in a capital letter A or H.Bark - see SupportBas-de-page - The "bottom of the page"; also "foot of the page."Baseline - The imaginary line on which the feet of minims and the bodies of most letters in a script sit.Bastarda script - A form of Gothic Cursiva used particularly in luxury manuscripts.Benedictional - A service book consisting of a collection of episcopal blessings, delivered during the Mass after the Pater noster and arranged according to the liturgical year.Beneventan - The script of the Abbey of Montecassino, widely used throughout the Middle Ages in southern Italy and the Adriatic region.Bestiary - The Bestiarius, De Bestiis, or Book of Beasts consists of descriptions and tales of animals, birds, fantastic creatures, and stones, real and imaginary, which are imbued with Christian symbolism or moral lessons.Beveled boards (Chamfered boards) - see BoardsBible - The sacred, canonical collection of texts of Christianity and Judaism.Bible historiale - The biblical narrative in prose form, written by Guyart des Moulins and based on his translation into French (1291-94) of the Historia scholastica of Peter Comestor, interspersed with a French translation of the Bible produced in Paris around 1250.Bible moralisée - The most important type of medieval picture Bible, also known as the Bible historiée, Bible allégorisée, or Emblemes bibliques. Composed during the thirteenth century, it consists of short biblical passages and related commentaries with moral or allegorical lessons.Biblia pauperum - The 'Bible of the Poor', which consisted of a series of captioned miniatures illustrating the parallels between the Old and New Testaments.Bifolio - One sheet of parchment or paper folded in half to create two folios (leaves) or four pages.Binding - The sewing and covering of a book.Binding medium - A material that mixes with the pigment and causes it to adhere to the support. Also called a binding agent.Biting letters - The joining or touching of two adjacent letters.Blind tooling - see Tooling (Blind tooling)Blocked - A technique of decorating bindings in which a design or picture is stamped into the leather cover by a block, into which the image has been carved or incised.Boards - The stiff covers at the front and back of a book.Boards, Beveled, Chamfered - see BoardsBoards, Covered with leather, cloth - see BoardsBoards, Wooden - see BoardsBole - A clay used for color in gesso.Book of Hours - A book, also called a primer or horae, for use in private devotions.Bookhand - A script characteristically used in books (as opposed to documents)Bookplate - A label that has been pasted inside a book to indicate ownership. See Ex Libris Inscription.Bookworms - see WormingBorder - The decorative surrounds, or borders, that were popular in Gothic and Renaissance illumination and which evolved during the thirteenth century from the extenders of decorated letters.Boss - A protruding ornament (on a binding), usually of metal. When applied to a binding it serves a protective function.Bounding lines - The marginal lines supplied during ruling to guide the justification of the text and its ancillaries (such as initials).Bow - The rounded part of letters such as b, c, d, p (also called a lobe).Breviary - A service book containing the texts necessary for the celebration of the Divine Office.Broken stroke - A change of direction in a stroke done without lifting the pen.Built-up initial - An initial drawn in ink and enhanced with additional ink strokes.Bull - An official letter bearing a lead seal, or bulla. Usually attributed to popes, but also issued by heads of religious orders.Burnishing - The process of enhancing the smoothness and shininess of a surface such as metallic pigment by polishing with a burnisher.