Brill’s New Pauly

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(2,079 words)

I. Overview

[German version]

A. Definition

Minuscule, in contrast to majuscule, is the name given to the form of writing where letters, often ligatured (Ligature), are organised in a(n idealised) four-line system: the two middle lines delimit the space for the bodies of the letters and the outer lines that for ascenders and descenders.

[German version]

B. Greek writing

In the history of Greek writing minuscule developed out of late antique cursive (Writing, styles of), whic…

Cite this page
Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice), Frioli, Donatella (Rimini) and John, James J. (Ithaca, N. Y.), “Minuscule”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 31 March 2023 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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