spell-bōc

spell-bōc, f.n: a book of homilies. [SPELL-BOK]

For this week’s Wordhord Wednesday post, take a closer look at this Anglo-Saxon manuscript. Read my post on Patreon.

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A much damaged folio from a book of Old English homilies, including the first series of Ælfric’s Catholic Homilies. England (south-east? south-west?), fourth quarter of the 10th century to first half of the 11th century. British Library, Cotton MS Vitellius C V, fol. 5v. [bl.uk]

god-spell

god-spell, n.n: gospel. (“god-spell”)

The gospel is the teaching or revelation of Christ. The gospels are the first four books of the New Testament (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John), which record Christ’s life and teaching.

Today is the feast of St Matthew the Apostle, one of the writers of the gospels.

…þegn unforcuð, / godspelles gleaw,   gast onsende / Matheus his   to metodsceafte / in ecne gefean.

– Old English Metrical Calendar (Menologium), lines 170b-73a

…the reputable thegn, skilled in (writing) the Gospel, Matthew, sent out his spirit, at the appointed destiny, into the eternal joy.

– translation by Kazutomo Karasawa

Kazutomo Karasawa, The Old English Metrical Calendar (Menologium) (Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 2015)

matthew

St Matthew in the Gospels of Macdurnan. Ireland, 9th century. Lambeth Palace Library, MS 1370, fol. 4v. [Pinterest]