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Cyrillic-Alpha-art - 9/7/17


"The Cyrillic Alphabet" by Meisterin Felicity Fluβmüllnerin.


NOTE: See also the files: alphabets-msg, calligraphy-msg, inks-msg, Birch-Brk-Wrt-art, parchment-msg, Rus-Handbook-art, Russia-msg, Poland-bib.





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Thank you,

Mark S. Harris...AKA:..Stefan li Rous

stefan at florilegium.org



You can find more work by this author on the Barony of Deftwood website:



The Cyrillic Alphabet

by Meisterin Felicity Flußmüllnerin


Cyrillic is an alphabet developed for the use of the Slavic peoples by the 9th century missionaries from Macedonia, Sts. Cyril and Methodius. It was originally developed to translate the bible and other religious works. Cyril and Methodius based their new Glagolitsa alphabet on their native Macedonian Greek with some changes and additions to accommodate the native Slavic dialects.


Over the course of the 10th century this alphabet evolved into what is known as Cyrillic, named after St Cyril. The Cyrillic alphabet was used to write Old Church Slavonic and was later adapted to write many other languages, including: Old Novgorod, Belarusian, Russian, Ukrainian, Czech, Slovak, Polish, Sorbian, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Bosnian, Serbian, Croatian, Montenegrin, and Slovenian. Each of these languages made slight changes over the years, but the alphabet remained basically the same throughout period, until the time of Peter the Great.


The most common calligraphic use of the Cyrillic alphabet is with an uncial hand. This is common from the 9th c to the 16th c. Letters are formed with the pen nib held at horizontal. The size of the hand varies within a single page from 2 nib widths to 10 nib widths. Slavic calligraphy is found on several mediums including vellum, parchment, paper and wood. Calligraphy is usually prepared with a nibbed pen; however there are several examples of pieces prepared with brushes, especially on icons. The black ink was made with several different recipes including gall, charcoal, and lamp black. The red ink is primarily cinnabar.


The alphabet is set in the Greek order, rather than in the American, Latin-based alphabet. There are several combinations sounds (zh, ch, sh, chsh), as well as several diphthongs (je, ju, ja) that are written in Cyrillic as a single letter. The two examples of "ja" are differentiated as within the word and as a word ending. There are two letters that are not letters in the traditional sense, but are soft and hard stresses written directly after the syllable they affect.



Bibliography and Resources


Cormack, Robin. ICONS. Harvard University Press. Cambridge, Massachusetts. 2007.


Goffe, Gaynor and Ravenscroft, Anna. Calligraphy School. The Reader's Digest Association, Inc. Pleasantville, New York. 1994.


Archbishop Averky. Liturgika. Holy Trinity Publications. Jordanville, New York. 2010. A History of Icon Painting. Grand Holdings Press. Jordanville, New York. 2011.


A Monk of St. Tikhon's. These Truths We Hold. St. Tikhon's Seminary Press. South Canaan, Pennsylvania. 1992.




Extant examples can be found at the following sites:

http://slovo-aso.cl.bas.bg/index.html http://kodeks.uni-bamberg.de/AKSL/Quellen/AKSL.CdxZographensis.htm http://www.biblical-data.org/OCS/Slavonic_samples.htm http://www.florin.ms/aleph5.html http://www.nlr.ru/eng/exib/Gospel/drus/list.html


The complete Gospels of Tzar Ivan the Terrible 1355:



16th c pages with Greek and Cyrillic on alternate lines as comparison:




This is an online engine which transliterates your wording phonetically into the Slavonic alphabet:



If you are interested in learning translation:



Copyright 2016 by Ciarrai Eaton. <ciarrai.eaton at gmail.com>. Permission is granted for republication in SCA-related publications, provided the author is credited.  Addresses change, but a reasonable attempt should be made to ensure that the author is notified of the publication and if possible receives a copy.


If this article is reprinted in a publication, please place a notice in the publication that you found this article in the Florilegium. I would also appreciate an email to myself, so that I can track which articles are being reprinted. Thanks. -Stefan.


<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org