FOR/2005/04/002 <http://www.livesandletters.ac.uk/> William H. Sherman 'Toward A History of the Manicule' Posted online: March 2005
"The seconde [finger] hyght Index and Salutaris, as it hyght demonstratiuus, the shewer, For with hym we grete, and shewe, and teche all thynges." 
--Bartholomaeus Anglicus, De proprietatibus rerum (1535)
"The history of the hand in relation to the book is above all the history of the index (in the multiple senses of that word)."
--Peter Stallybrass, "Navigating the Book" (1998) 
This project on the textual hand-with-pointing-finger symbol--what I will call the "manicule" for reasons to be explored below--grows out of a book-in-progress called Used Books: Reading Renaissance Marginalia, which is the product of my long-standing interest in the marks that readers make in books, particularly during the first century or two after the invention of printing. As I was working on the chapter devoted to the symbols used by and for readers in marginalia, I quickly realized that the pointing hand needed a full-length essay (if not book) of its own. Trying to get a handle on the late Medieval and Renaissance uses of this almost universal symbol poses all kinds of methodological challenges; but I discovered the biggest one when I had to give this essay a title. The problem is that everyone knows what the symbol is and does when they see it, but almost nobody knows what to call it. There is no single word, in fact, that will conjure it up for everyone--and I would even suggest that it may be the most pervasive feature in the history of textual culture that does not have a standard name.
Readers who mark their books have always tended to develop systems of signs for breaking texts down into manageable chunks and locating key topics or claims at a glance. In 2002 the Levenger Company (whose slogan is "Tools for Serious Readers") posted a table on its website to report on the techniques submitted by its customers, offering it as a guide to making "masterly marginalia."  If a late medieval or Renaissance reader looked at this list, they would recognize some of the marks ("def.," "Rx," "∴," "¶," and "underline and brackets") and many of the functions ("interesting," "compare," "memorize this," "versus," and "cross-reference"), but they would wonder why there were so many abbreviated words ("vo" for vocabulary word, "vy" for very, "w/o" for without, and so on) instead of non-verbal signs like asterisks, flowers, astrological symbols, and subject-coded ciphers. In particular, they would have wondered what had happened to the pointing hand that so often served as the symbol of choice for marking noteworthy passages: between at least the 12th and 18th centuries, it may have been the most common symbol produced both for and by readers in the margins of manuscripts and printed books.
I first encountered these marginal hands in the library of the Elizabethan polymath John Dee, the first reader I studied intensively and the first who made me aware of the sophisticated information-processing techniques used by Renaissance readers. Dee sometimes drew neat manicules, with simple and almost circular cuffs, in annotating the texts in his library; and he even used them to single out many items in the inventory of his books that he had prepared in 1583 (including, as it happens, his manuscript copy of "Bartholomaeus Anglicus de proprietatibus rerum"). But they did not stick in my mind or get me thinking about them in the way that a new survey of another Elizabethan library did: manicules are one of the most conspicuous features in the marginalia found in the books bequeathed by Archbishop Matthew Parker to Corpus Christi College Cambridge (where they remain, more or less intact, forming the core of the college library that now bears his name). Along with a simple three-leafed flower (or "trefoil"), an ownership monogram that became ever more elaborate as his collection and stature grew, and a mysterious symbol that nobody has managed to decipher, the mark that I came to associate most strongly with Parker turned out to be the manicule. Especially when he drew them in the red pencil or crayon that he used for his most emphatic annotations, Parker's pointing hands effectively do the work of "indexing" in the expanded sense described by Bartholomaeus--pointing, displaying, and leading (or, to use that text's more striking formulation, 'greeting, showing, and teaching').
But I found myself asking: why did readers like Parker take the trouble to stop and sketch a pointing hand when a simple line would have been faster, easier, and more precise? And why did the symbol come to play such a central role in directing readers and consumers in the cultures of printing, advertising, and web browsing? In seeking answers to these questions I had been expecting to turn to a classic survey on the subject and was surprised to find that there was almost nothing in the way of sustained attention to the use of the symbol within manuscript, print, or digital culture (much less across or between them). Manicules were disappointingly absent from the sources I habitually turn to for help with this sort of thing--Michelle P. Brown's illustrated glossary, Understanding Illuminated Manuscripts, and M. B. Parkes's writings on the history of punctuation (especially his Pause and Effect). While they often appear in the fonts advertised by particular printing houses, they do not figure in the classic guides to the printer's art from the last few centuries--not even in chapters that are explicitly concerned with textual symbols. There is no description of them in John Carter's ABC for Book Collectors--despite the fact that serious collectors of printed books and ephemera almost certainly own examples of them and that Carter's glossary itself uses them to illustrate some of its key terms. Manicules adorn the jackets of most of the recent studies of marginalia--including Anthony Grafton's Commerce with the Classics, William Slights's Managing Readers, Roger Stoddard's Marks in Books, Illustrated and Explained, Kevin Jackson's Invisible Forms, and Heather Jackson's Marginalia -- but none of these books describe or discuss the symbol in any detail. Finally, there are facsimiles of pointing hands on the spine and back cover and scattered throughout the margins of the essays in the comprehensive exhibition catalogue, The Reader Revealed (2001), and the volume's editor, Sabrina Baron, even calls them "manicules"; but none of the essays (including my own) gives them more than a passing glance.
Eventually I stumbled across a short but heavily illustrated survey of printers' hands by Charles Hasler in an old journal devoted to the art and science of typography. Hasler's 1953 essay, "A Show of Hands," opens with two entries from the American Dictionary of Printing and Bookmaking, published back in 1894:
Fist: An expression for an index mark, sometimes called a mutton-fist in England, and made thus: [pointing hand]. It is also called a hand in America. It serves to call attention to the words following.
Index: The mark [pointing hand], commonly called a fist or hand in a printing office. ...As a mark of reference an index is the seventh, immediately following the paragraph.
But the only technical account that I am aware of in print now can be found as the second entry for "digit" in G. A. Glaister's recently reissued Encyclopedia of the Book, and here it is in its entirety:
digit 2. the printer's symbol [pointing hand]. This type ornament has a long history, the printed outline of a hand being used as a paragraph mark by, among other early printers, Huss at Lyons in 1484 in the edition of Paulus Florentinus's 'Breviarum totius juris canonici' he printed with Johannes Schabeler. As with other typographic conventions this was taken from scribal practice, carefully drawn hands pointing to a new paragraph being found in early 12th century (Spanish) manuscripts. It is also known as a fist, hand, or index.
This essay will not set out to develop an argument as much as to flesh out Glaister's sketchy definition, pointing toward the longer and more fully illustrated account the subject deserves. I will be devoting three sections to the symbol's name, history, and function, and each of these will take its title from a phrase in Glaister's definition. But I want to start with an introductory section, offering some general background on the relationship between texts and hands.
...At first sight we learne to read; and then
By Natures rules to perce and construe Men:
So commenting upon their Gesture, finde
In them the truest copie of the Minde.
The Tongue and Heart th'intention oft divide:
The Hand and Meaning ever are ally'de.
--William Diconson (1644) 
Early modern readers were trained in schools, universities, Inns of Court, and even common households in what might be described as the manipulation of information--in selecting, ordering, and applying resources gleaned from a wide variety of texts. "Manipulate" is one of our many terms derived from manus, the Latin word for "hand" (which is itself the source of the synonymous "handle"); and I have used it to describe an activity that was very much a matter, in Diconson's day, of taking the text in hand and fitting it to the purposes at hand. For instance, when James Sanford began his career as a translator in 1567 with a collection of quotable aphorisms called The Manuell of Epictetus, he drew on precisely these terms to describe his handiwork in the dedication to Queen Elizabeth:
I toke in hand this little Boke, as a triall in the true trade of interpreting [i.e., translating]. Which done, I thought not my trauaile mysspent, but worthie to be published abroad for common vse and commoditie, and meete that of all estates he be vsually read, dayly to be had in hande, and continually to be had in remembraunce....
In calling his book a "manual" Sanford was explicitly invoking its etymological association with the hand, an association that would become even more explicit once the Anglo-Saxon word "handbook" entered mainstream English in the nineteenth century: as he explained in the preface "To the Reader,"
This booke (gentle Reader) is entituled a Manuell, which is deriued of the Latin word Manuale, and in Greeke is called Enchyridion, bicause he may be contained ε υ χ ε ι ρ ι that is, in the hand. It is a diminutiue of Manus, as it were a storehouse, & which ought always to be had in hand, as the handle in the sword.
The mnemonic "storehouse" that the pre-modern readers were supposed to construct for themselves in and through the texts that came to their hands was often figured as a gathering of choice flowers, sometimes marked visually with the image of a flower or leaf and often labeled rhetorically with the name "florilegium" -- which Mary Carruthers and Jan M. Ziolkowski have usefully described as "a collection of sayings, maxims, and stories collected from past works...[in which] the flowers of (one's extensive) reading [were] gathered up in some orderly arrangement for the purpose of quick, secure recollection in connection with making a new composition." Current work on memory, rhetoric, and reading has paid considerably less attention to the florilegium's handy counterpart, the manual--perhaps because (unlike the obsolete and exotic "flower-book") the "hand-book" has become one of our most mundane genres, losing much of the richness of its figurative associations with the hand.
Both literally and metaphorically, however, reading used to be considered as much the province of the hand as of the other faculties mentioned in Diconson's poem -- "sight," "mind," "tongue," and "heart." For most literate adults now, reading is a fully internalized process, a matter of invisible and inaudible communication between the eyes and the brain; and, in our most idealized and disembodied accounts, we imagine a cerebral communion with absent authors (many of whom no longer have bodies). Unless we're wrestling with an unusually large volume or feeling our way through an unusually delicate book; unless we're running our fingertips over a text in Braille or our pointers through a Torah scroll; and unless we're the kind of reader who follows along with our index finger or gives them a good lick before turning the page, it's probably safe to say that we're not even conscious of our hands as we make our way through a text.
But for most of the centuries in which there have been texts to be read, readers have picked up their books with an acute awareness of the symbolic and instrumental power of the hand--which Aristotle famously called "the instrument of instruments" (De Anima, 3.8). That power may have reached a peak in 1644, when the English physician John Bulwer published a volume containing his two extraordinary treatises on hand-gestures, Chirologia and Chironomia--and this is the book in which Diconson's poem appears as a prefatory tribute. The full title of Bulwer's work will not only give you a sense of the scope of his project but also--through its relentless play on the Latin manus and the Greek chiro---remind you of the fact that the association between hands and texts is deeply embedded in the English language (and remains so even after the age of the manuscript gives way to the printed book, and the texts being read are no longer automatically and directly produced by hand):
Chirologia: or the Naturall Language of the Hand. Composed of the Speaking Motions, and Discoursing Gestures thereof. Whereunto is added Chironomia: Or, the Art of Manuall Rhetoricke. Consisting of the Naturall Expressions, digested by Art in the HAND, as the chiefest Instrument of Eloquence, by Historicall Manifesto's, Exemplified Out of the Authentique Registers of Common Life, and Civill Conversation.
The bulk of the text is an explication of Bulwer's diagrams of gestures involving the finger or hand, called "chirograms," illustrating them with passages from Biblical and Classical texts. One of these tables is the "Alphabet of naturall Gestures of the FINGERS" (Book 1, p.188); another is the "Alphabet of Action, or Table of Rhetoricall INDIGITATIONS" (Book 2, p.94).
Bulwer may have been more obsessed with hands than anyone in history: he signed this work "J. B. Gent. Philochirosophus" and he even went so far as to name his adopted daughter Chirothea. But he was very much the product of his period, and of the rhetorical, pedagogical, political, and philosophical movements that were giving new force to the old alliance between the hand and meaning. First, he was educated during the heyday of the recovery of classical rhetoric, in which persuasive speaking involved both a verbal and a gestural component. Quintilian's Institutio Oratoria became a foundational text for Renaissance readers, writers, and speakers; and it divided the subject of "delivery" into "utterance" and "gesture." In Book XI Quintilian describes in detail the appropriate actions involving the head, arm, and hand; and among them is one that takes us very close to the work of the manicule:
When three fingers are doubled under the thumb, the finger which Cicero says Crassus used so well is extended. This finger is important in reproach and in pointing things out (which is why it has its name [indice in Latin, index in English]). Turned slightly downwards, with the whole hand raised and turned towards the shoulder, it expresses strong statement; pointed down towards the ground, facing downwards, as it were, it insists on a point. Sometimes also it indicates number.
These were also the pioneering years in the development of sign language, and Bulwer himself would soon contribute to the search for alphabetical and gestural systems that could be 'spoken' with the hands. His Phi7locophus: The Deafe and Dumbe Man's Friend of 1648 was the first English treatise on the education of the deaf. Bulwer realized that his hand-symbols could also prove useful wherever people needed to communicate secretly (and remember that Bulwer's books were produced in the early years of the English Civil War): his visual key to gestures involving the fingers was "ordered to serve for privy cyphers for any secret intimation" (Chirologia 188). But the most mysterious claim (at least to our ears) is hinted at in Diconson's suggestion that while the tongue is vulnerable to distortion and deceit, the gestures of the hand will always be "the truest copie of the Minde." Bulwer's work was part of the seventeenth-century quest for a universal language, one that would not only allow people from different places to communicate with each other but would, more importantly, recover the integrity of language before the Tower of Babel and even before the Fall itself.
This worldview--and the place of the hand in it--was beautifully reconstructed a few years ago in the exhibition, Writing on Hands: Memory and Knowledge in Early Modern Europe, curated by Claire Richter Sherman. Her catalogue assembled an extraordinary array of images in which inscribing and inscribed hands are involved in all of Bulwer's functions, and then some. There are fingers being used as calculators and calendars, as companions to singing and speaking, as aids to memory and prompts for meditation, as maps of mortal fortune and emblems of divine truth--every kind of textual finger, in fact, except the good old marginal pointer. Partly because it is so pervasive and partly because it is an anthropomorphic rather than an arbitrary sign (mimicking a human action that we come to understand intuitively), the manicule has been easy for scholars to overlook, not worrying much about what they're called, where and when they have been used, and which needs they have been used to serve. But with the recent surge of interest in readers' marks, in textual features that move across the manuscript/print divide, and in the relationship between bodies and books, the pointing hand is coming into scholarly consciousness as a valuable (if scattered) source of evidence for the history of textual production and reception.
Which takes us back to Glaister and the first of my three sections glossing his definition....
Let's begin with the name. Remember that Glaister's entry provides three other names for the symbol (all of which are more commonly used than the one he chose for his main entry) and that the American Dictionary of Printing and Bookmaking defines the symbol under two different terms (while referring to two more in their definitions). In fact, the book trade itself has never been completely consistent in its terminology: the Mergenthaler Linotype Company's 1918 specimen book included its pointing hands in two sections headed "Fists" (890, 1116), but in the 1923 specimen book of their competitors, the American Type Founders Company, the symbol is included under "auxiliaries" (596), "Index Cuts" (597), and "directors" (761). Clearly there's some sorting out to do. This has been true for some time, but it became especially clear on June 16th 1993 when a query was posted on ExLibris, the electronic discussion forum for rare book and manuscript specialists. A librarian who had been stumped by a patron sent out a plea for information to his colleagues: "Does anyone know the term or name for the 'pointing hand' one frequently finds drawn in the margins of manuscript and early printed books? ...I can find no documentation." The replies came in and the terms proliferated until Donald Farren weighed in with what his subject heading described as "The last word on pilcrow, paragraph, hand, [and] fist?" But that proved to be wishful thinking. The same exact question generated another thread on ExLibris in the Spring of 1998--with no reference to the same community's discussion less than five years earlier  --and it has since been discussed on at least three other list-servs: InfoD (dedicated to Information Design), SHARP-L (for members of the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading, and Publishing), and Typophile (for lovers of typography, one of whom pointed out that the manicule in Garamond's 1530 font had six digits rather than five).
In my initial trawl for manicules at the Folger Shakespeare Library, I discovered that the library's bibliographical descriptions use at least 2 different names for the pointing hands inscribed by earlier readers--and neither "digit" nor "manicule" is among them. The reference librarian helpfully suggested that I search the "Folger Copy Notes" field in the online catalogue for the phrase "pointing hand," and this yielded 70 good examples from Incunables and STC books. But during a conversation with the man responsible for writing many of the descriptions in this catalogue, I learned that the term he tends to use in cataloging rare books is "fist." A new search instantly took my tally to well over 400 volumes. And it was Heather Wolfe, the Folger's curator of manuscripts, who first introduced me to the term "manicule," suggesting that it has become the standard term in the field of codicological description.
I have now found 15 other names for what I prefer to follow the manuscript specialists in calling the manicule: hand, pointing hand, hand director, pointer, digit, fist, mutton fist, bishop's fist, index, indicationum, indicator, indicule, maniple, and pilcrow. The last three terms are outright mistakes: indicule and maniple are mishearings, misrememberings, or conflations of similar words. Indicule clearly combines "indicator" and "manicule," two of the traditional terms for the pointing hand. Maniple is a trickier case: it may simply be a misapplication of the technical term for the cloth draped over the arm by a priest during communion, but I suspect that the word "manicule" is being fused with "manciple" (since the example occurs in a study of Chaucer, one of whose Canterbury Tales is delivered by a manciple). Pilcrow, finally, properly designates the backwards p symbol used to mark new paragraphs (¶--many of us still use the symbol in editing texts but, again, few of us could recognize or recall the technical term for it). But the rest of the names have all been 'correct' at some point in the history of texts, and most of them can still be found in recent literature. The only way a single name could be established is if librarians can agree upon a standardized terminology for marks like this one and then achieve universal dissemination among their staff and readers. Librarians have been hard at work on the first of these tasks--creating official lexicons for bibliographical descriptions--but they are unlikely to make much headway in the second. And it may not, in fact, be desirable to lose the history of associations preserved in terms like "bishop's fist" and "mutton fist"--even if we can no longer imagine what a pointing hand has to do with either clergymen or sheep or why a hand with an extended finger would be described as a fist.
That said, there are clear benefits in knowing that the word you're using to describe something will be the same word used in the databases you are searching, and that it will be understood by most of your readers without requiring a trip to the dictionary. For my part, I have settled on "manicule" because it seems like the most general and most neutral description of the symbol: it derives from the Latin manicula, simply meaning "little hand," and that really captures what it is without getting into the messy business of what it does. Another thing that "manicule" has going for it is that it applies equally to little hands in all kinds of texts, and to those produced by readers as well as for them, whereas "fist" has its origins in printers' slang and should properly be restricted to the products of the printing press. The biggest problem with "manicule"--aside from the fact that people will keep mixing it up with manciples, manacles, and manicures--is that it is not (yet) an English word. It is apparently the standard term for the symbol in modern romance languages and it is belatedly being imported into English, but it's not yet in the OED or any other dictionary of current usage, and my spell-checker certainly doesn't like it. Nor does it appear in any but the most technical guides to the description of manuscripts. So if readers do not already know that the term refers to the good old pointing hand, they're unlikely to figure it out on their own.
While Glaister defines the manicule--or "digit"--as a "type ornament," he usefully draws attention to the fact that (like so many other phenomena in early printing) it "was taken from scribal practice." I have not done a systematic search for manicules in medieval manuscripts, and have to take Glaister at his word that they stretch back at least to twelfth-century Spain. They were particularly common in the manuscripts produced and annotated in Italy during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, and these manicules could be shockingly elaborate. A 14th-century Cicero at Berkeley has been heavily annotated by a reader using a fanciful hand in which the rubbery fingers stretch out to bracket and sub-divide a long and crucial passage. The text inscribed on the unusually capacious cuff indicates the nature of the reader's interest. The most lifelike manicules I have come across to date appear in the late 15th-century zibaldone (or commonplace book) compiled by the Venetian nobleman Bernardo Bembo (father of the famous Cardinal Pietro Bembo), now in the British Library. Bembo uses careful shading to show the hands in delicate postures, and orients them in dramatic acts of 'showing'. A recent account of this manuscript describes them as "maniculae molto caratteristiche." Manicules featured in the marginalia of many of the great Italian Humanists, including Petrarch, Boccaccio, and Sozomeno of Pistoia. These manicules are simpler than Bembo's, to be sure, but they are no less 'characteristic': in the words of the leading scholar on their handwriting, "[Petrarch's] hands are distinctive: they have a long index fingers, generally with the nail marked, a cuff is indicated by two parallel lines, and although no thumb is shown there are often five fingers, which makes the hand look very odd," and "[Boccaccio's] elegantly drawn pointing hand with a long index finger, and sometimes a buttoned sleeve, is distinctive, and so are the lines which often curl at the end into a flower or spray of leaves that he uses to bracket sections of text."
Readers continued to incorporate manicules in their manuscript marginalia after the invention of printing--throughout the transitional incunable period and well beyond. This practice provides some of our most graphic evidence that after the printing press begins to provide readers with books that are relatively uniform, accurate, and easy to navigate, readers continue to customize them according to their needs and tastes. Nowhere is this clearer than on pages where printed and manuscript manicules coexist (and not always peacefully): in the British Library's copy of the 1575 Familist tract Terra pacis, the anonymous reader's manicules draw attention to a completely different set of passages than those marked by the printer's fists, and they sometimes face off across the gutter of a single opening.
Not all manicules took long to draw, and in some cases, the style was very simple--no more than 2 squiggly strokes suggesting the barest sketch of a pointing hand. In others, however, they were clearly the product of considerable skill and imagination. These manicules raise some of the same questions as the grotesque and sometimes scatalogical visuals in manuscript illumination that Michael Camille studied so brilliantly in his Image on the Edge over a decade ago. They are excessive and quirky in a way that may be more interested in play than in beauty; but either way, they certainly catch the eye.
In fact, while the printers' manicules tend to be restrained in style and rigidly locked into their horizontal position alongside the texts they are highlighting, manuscript manicules often played with the space of the page. In some cases they are intentionally made to look like they're extending in from a now invisible reader's body off the edge of the margin--almost like a comic version of the hand of God coming down from the clouds in Renaissance emblems and in rings with moving dials and pointers. Even when they're not being particularly playful, readers exercised both flexibility and ingenuity in deploying their manicules. I was surprised to find that some readers used manicules to point not to passages in the text they were annotating but to passages within their own annotations.
Readers are still routinely using simple manicules to draw attention to specific passages in 17th-century books and manuscripts, but the practice does seem to die out as we move through the 18th century and into the 19th century--which is precisely when the printed manicules begin to take on some of the variety and playfulness of their manuscript counterparts in their humanist heyday. During the incunable period, printers began to experiment with printed images of pointing hands. In 1498, when Friedrich Biel of Basel printed a Spanish edition of the Directorium humanae vitae, he illustrated the text with 125 page-width woodcuts and placed little figures of men and women in marginal compartments, where they point out the morals summarized in the margin. And in Steven Mierdman's 1548 printing of Melanchthon's treatise on the sacrament, there is a unique and peculiarly decorated pointing hand at the beginning of the text. Such experiments were relatively rare, however, and throughout the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries, printers' fists remained very limited in size and surprisingly uniform in appearance and function. The picture changes in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries when, as the examples collected in Hasler's "A Show of Hands" reveal, printers' designs became markedly more elaborate, and more common in a wider range of publications. Hasler was particularly interested in their use in commercial and industrial settings, and they come to play a crucial role in the visual vocabulary of advertising--as well as in public signage (most obviously in "fingerposts"), and in a wide range of official documents (including the "Return to Sender" stamp used by the US Postal Service). The manicule has even exercised its iconic power in pop culture--perhaps most memorably in the shape of the menacing pointing hand that carries out the dirty work for the "blue meanies" in the Beatles movie The Yellow Submarine.
With the advent of personal computing, and particularly the development of the internet, manicules would be put back in readers' hands: as companies like Microsoft tell us, big gloved hands are not powerful weapons of the authorities but rather powerful tools for the people, the means by which (as a famous series of ads promised) we can travel anywhere we can point our finger. "Digital" technically refers to the use of discrete numbers, which were originally reckoned on the fingers, or digits; but the developers of operating systems and interfaces have had the hand's indexical functions in mind from the start. In 1980, Allen Kay developed SmallTalk, the first commercial object-oriented programming language and probably the first to use a hand-shaped cursor, for the Xerox Star, the immediate forerunner to Apple's Lisa, which would evolve into the Macinstosh. And in 1981, Ben Schneiderman coined the phrase "direct manipulation" to describe the developers' goal of replacing typed line commands with visual objects that could be handled in ways familiar from the real, physical world. Both Kay and Schneiderman were in close contact with the field of child development, and took their inspiration from practical experiments on the ways in which children use to learn basic tools: one of their basic principles was that users should be able to "point and click." Finally, in the early 90s, the first web browsers were designed where the cursor changes from an arrow to a hand with a pointing finger whenever there is an active link to something else; and Adobe began to use a similar hand (in its Acrobat and Photoshop applications), allowing readers to grasp a page with their virtual fingers and move it around. Again, for the basic business of 'greeting, showing, and teaching', the hand is the perfect Graphic User Interface.
Glaister's entry on the pointing hand identifies only one function for manicules, whether they appear in manuscripts or in printed books. He explains that "early printers" used "the printed outline of a hand...as a paragraph mark"; and he reminds us that scribes can be found using "carefully drawn hands pointing to a new paragraph" as early as the 12th Century. There are three substantial limitations in this account. First, Glaister describes only drawn or printed hands and fails to mention the extended finger that turns an open hand (the symbol for stop or hello) or a fully clenched one (a proper fist) into a pointing one. Second, Glaister describes these hands only as the work of the producers of texts (first scribes and then printers); but as we have seen, some of the most interesting examples and issues relate to their use by readers. This is quite a serious limitation, and it points (I think) to the fact that readers are generally given short shrift in reference materials on the history of the book. And third, the marking of a new paragraph turns out to be only one of many jobs that images of pointing hands perform in the margins of texts: far from being the manicule's only function, I have in fact found very few scribes, printers, or readers using them in this way.
The primary functions served by the manicule are, on the one hand, designed to clarify the organization of the text and, on the other, to help individual readers to find their way around that structure and put their hands on passages of particular interest (especially when they return to a book after some time). On the most general level, in other words, the function of the manicule is to prevent the text from getting out of hand. I want to stress that this is more than mere wordplay--or at least that it is playing with associations that have been in place for a very long time. According to Helkiah Crooke's 1615 anatomy text, Mikrokosmographia: A Description of the Body of Man, "The true office of the Hand is to apprehend or to holde, and his proper action is apprehension (for Hand and Hold are Conjugates as we term them in Schooles)...." Again, this points ahead to the educational theories of the early 80s, and particularly to Howard Gardner's concept of bodily-kinetic intelligence whereby the body learns the hand-eye coordination needed to "apprehend directly" actions, feelings, and ideas. So how exactly were marginal hands used to apprehend texts, in the physical and intellectual senses invoked by Crooke and Gardner?
Scribes and printers have occasionally used them to draw the reader's attention to new paragraphs; but they were more likely to be used to mark new sections in key places--especially at the beginning or ending of a book. Both a manicule and a paraph are used to mark the beginning of the Preface to the Reader in William Tyndale's 1536 translation of the New Testament; and in Taverner's 1539 Bible, a cluster of symbols--including manicules and hederas--mark the "table for to fynde manye of the chyefe and principall maters conteyned in the Bible," followed by another manicule for the opening "exhortation to the diligent studye of the holy scripture gathered out of the Bible." And on the last page of Mierdman's printing of The apology of Johan Bale agaynste a ranke papist, the manicule is used to index the end of the index, and also (in conjunction with a paraph) to point to the errors in need of correction.
As the printed book hit its stride and title pages began to come into their own, there was no section more in need of highlighting than the title itself. The pointing hand became increasingly associated with announcing events and advertising products (including books). Hasler provides several images of playbills and other early advertisements where single fists or rows of fists are used to draw the eye to a title--and in Mierdman's 1553 printing of the so-called "Great Bible" there is evidence that this now familiar advertising strategy was already in use in the first century of printing. And Mierdman was not the only printer to employ this technique. In the title compartment from an edition of the psalms printed by N. Hill for William Seres in the same year, there is a manicule pointing at the title from between the author's initials. Of course, in religious contexts like these a hand with a finger pointing upward was always open to other--and holier--meanings: it would almost certainly have been recognized as one of the most common gestures in all of Renaissance art, signaling either a divine benediction or a reminder to think of heaven.
In addition to being used to mark important titles or sub-sections, manicules were also used by authors and printers within the text proper to signal the appearance of particular subjects or kinds of material. Thomas James's Manuduction, or introduction vnto diuinitie (1625) placed special emphasis on his extensive use of manuscript sources, and a note on the title-page explained "This marke † noteth the places that are taken out of the Indices Expurgatorij: And this [pointing hand], a note of the places in the Parchments."
Manicules could also be used to highlight passages that were added to a new edition of an old text. When Michael Dalton's widely used handbook for Justices of the Peace, The Country Justice, was issued in a 4th edition in 1630, the title-page explained "Now the fourth time published, and reuised, corrected, and inlarged, the additions being thus marked, [pointing hand]". The laws of the realm were perhaps the classic example of texts that kept accumulating new information and became harder to organize as they did so. The 1608 collection of Statutes used manicules and asterisks to mark the beginnings and endings of passages concerning the work of those same Justices of the Peace that Dalton's book was aimed at.
When they appeared in the text itself, manicules were a standard signal that an authorial annotation could be found in the margin or elsewhere in the book. The Great Bible of 1539 was a particularly important (if singularly unsuccessful) experiment in the use of symbols for this purpose. In a letter to Cromwell dated 9 August 1538, the translator and printer outlined their intentions:
As touchynge the maner and order that we kepe in thesame worke, Pleaseth your goode lordship to be aduertised that this merke [pointing hand] in the text, signifieth, that vpon the same (in the later ende of the booke) there is some notable annotacion, which we haue writen, without any pryuate opinon, onlye after the best interpreters of the hebrues for the more clearnesse of the text.
But annotations were always a bone of contention in translations of the Bible, and in this case they were blocked by the authorities--at what must have been a late date, because the manicules inserted to flag them remained in place. A "prologue" in the printed text offered this explanation to its bewildered readers:
We haue also (as ye maye se) added many handes both in the mergent of thys volume, and also in the text, vpon the which, we purposed to haue made in the ende of the Byble (in a table by them selues) certen godly annotacions: but for so moch as thet there hath not bene soffycient tyme minystred to the kynges moost honorable councell, for the ouersyght and correccyon of the sayde annotacyons, we wyll therfore omyt them, tyll their more conuenient leysour. Doynge now nomore but beseke the moost gentle reader, that when thou commest at soch a place where a hande doth stande (or any other where, in the Byble) & thou canst not attayne to the meanynge and true knowledge of that sentence, then do not rashly presume to make any pryuate interpretacyon therof: but submyt thy selfe to the iudgement of those that are godly learned in Christ Jesu.
The resulting pages give off what Lyn Tribble has described as very mixed messages:
The page presents a strange appearance; little printer's hands are scattered throughout the margin and in the text itself, pointing at various places. ...In essence, a pointing hand warns the reader that the passage at hand is church property; that there are 'godly' or officially sanctioned readings of these texts. ...The pointing hands, then, signify hands off to the readers; interpretation is a privileged enterprise to be conducted by the church. At the same time, of course, the pointing hands undoubtedly served to draw attention to suspect passages.
The manicules in the Great Bible were, in effect, pointless without their matching annotations. But it was common practice to insert a symbol of some sort in the text wherever an annotation appeared, and to key the passage to the annotation by repeating the symbol at the beginning of the annotation in the margin. The French term for this kind of sign is signe de renvoi, and manicules served in that capacity alongside hederas, asterisks, and the other symbols that printers had available in their cases  --on a typical page from Tyndale's 1537 text on The obedyence of a Chrysten man, they are all used in sequence to organize the glosses and summary headings.
The most common function of the manicule (by far) was simply pointing to a passage that someone involved in producing or using the book considered worth noting: this is true of many printed manicules and the vast majority of the manuscript examples I have encountered. In the Folger's copy of a 1486 commentary on Aristotle's De Anima, the annotator has taken the trouble to spell out what is implicit in most manicules: the pointing hand is functioning as a visually striking version of the most common marginal annotation of all--"nota" or "nota bene." Aside from writing out the word "NOTA" in full or abbreviated form, the manicule served alongside the asterisk and the flower as the most visible technique for marking noteworthy texts.
As Bembo's extraordinary commonplace book has already suggested, manicules came to play an important role in the Renaissance culture of commonplacing. The marking of sententiae (sententious or epigrammatic sayings) and, more generally, the recording and reusing of exemplary passages from authoritative books, became a basic skill in the Elizabethan schoolroom; and it became a correspondingly pervasive feature in the printed books of the period. In a classic essay on "The Marking of Sententiae" in Elizabethan literature, G. K. Hunter explained: "The use of certain typographical devices to pick out sententiae is fairly common in certain classes of books printed in Europe between the approximate dates 1500 and 1660." The practice is self-explanatory and it is rare to find anyone reflecting explicitly upon its technical or symbolic potential; but one of the most intriguing examples occurs in Sir Philip Sidney's Arcadia. In the story of Zelmane and Philoclea, the image of a lover kissing the hand of her suffering paramour leads to an unlikely cameo by the manicule:
But Zelmane that saw in him the glasse of her owne miserie, taking the hande of Philoclea, and with burning kisses setting it close to her lips (as if it should stande there like a hande in the margine of a Booke, to note some saying worthy to be marked) began to speake these wordes...."
And Hunter's opening paragraph quotes what may well be the most explicit acknowledgment of the practice in the entire period, Charles Butler's 1633 textbook on oratory: "It can henceforth be noted that it is useful to indicate the most worthy Precepts or Sententiae, particularly those upon which something is added at the end of the work, with some sign, such as an Asterisk * or a Hand [pointing hand], standing out in the margin." (And in order to illustrate the practice, he points to this very passage with a hand in the margin.)
That's exactly what the editor Thomas Speght did when he produced a new text of Chaucer's works at the end of Queen Elizabeth's reign. In his first edition of 1598, he had complained about not having sufficient time to do all of the editorial work he had planned, and on the errata sheet he bitterly noted: "Sentences...which are many and excellent in this Poet, might have been noted in the margent with some marke, which now must be left to the search of the Reader." His new and improved text of 1602 set out to remedy this failing: the title-page advertised the new feature is immediately apparent as we run our eye down the maniculed margins--"Sentences and Prouerbes noted" with printed hands. In Clare Kinney's words, "The pointing hands on the printed page do not simply draw one's attention to the 'sententious' moments in a given work; they also construct a digest of Chaucer for the reader's consumption. ...Speght is, as it were, pre-selecting the Chaucerian entries for a Renaissance commonplace book."
But Renaissance readers of the sort who were compiling commonplace books were rarely satisfied with the selections made by others. The Folger Library's copy of Speght's 1602 Chaucer has been annotated by the playwright Ben Jonson. David McPherson, who compiled the catalogue of Jonson's library, apparently thought that the printed manicules scattered liberally throughout the book were written in by Jonson, who was an avid annotator--particularly of his poetic forebears. Witness the British Library's copy of George Puttenham's The Arte of English Poesie, bearing what may be some of Jonson's most emphatic annotations. On the second page from the first chapter of the book, Jonson has used his typical manicule (along with his typical flowers and asterisks) to mark the entire section on Homer's extraordinary poetic powers. Here Jonson extends the reach of his highlighting symbols without resorting to brackets by trailing both the stem of the flower and the line of the cuff down the margin.
Sadly, in the Folger's Chaucer, Jonson's annotations are much fainter and sparser, and they appear only in a couple of short (and, as it turns out, apocryphal) texts. However, Jonson did enter some small and distinct manicules next to sententiae that Speght had missed but he considered worthy of marking for his Chaucerian digest.
I want to close by returning to the questions I opened with: why did so many readers, until relatively recently, take the trouble to stop and draw a whole hand when they simply wanted to mark something as important? And why did so many authors and printers use the increasingly heavy-handed image of the manicule to direct the attention of their readers? Unlike the simple line or even the figural flower and asterisk, the manicule has a gestural function that extends beyond its straightforwardly indexical one.
In Francis Bacon's typically suggestive phrase, gestures are "transient hieroglyphics": they have a live and passing quality that has led Jean-Claude Schmitt to lament the fact that "Gestures, like words, belong to an ephemeral world. Usually they do not leave any traces for historians." On one level, this is painfully true. Before the age of moving pictures and phonographic recordings, the movements and accents of speakers and actors are notoriously difficult to reconstruct: we do not know what Bulwer's voice sounded like, and we have no visual record of his own "Speaking Motions, and Discoursing Gestures." On another level, however, Schmitt's observation is patently absurd. Both the words and the gestures of the past have been recorded in durable forms such as printed books and engravings; and Bulwer's heavily illustrated texts give us a vivid sense not just of his peculiar way with words but also of the sorts of things he and his contemporaries did with their hands while they spoke (or, sometimes, in place of speaking).
And like all gestures, textual pointing hands tend to be both generic and individual. While they share some basic features and functions, their appearance (as you have probably noticed in my brief survey) is extremely distinctive. I think it's possible that, after a signature and a monogram, the manicule was the most personal symbol a reader could develop and deploy. I came to this conclusion when surveying the marginalia produced by Archbishop Parker and his scholarly circle--the example I started with. I found that, given the range of scripts employed by Parker through the course of his career, and the similarity between his hands and those of his secretaries (and, indeed, other readers trained to write at the same time and place), it was usually difficult and often impossible to identify a set of annotations as Parker's. Except when he used manicules. Like Bembo's manicules, Parker's are 'molto caratteristiche'. Parker's pointing hands are instantly recognizable: they have the simple lines of a cartoon, but they become as much of a visual signature as the famous sillhouette of Alfred Hitchcock in profile (and, in fact, one of them bears such a striking resemblance to it that I labeled it the "Hitchcock hand" in my notes).
With modern readers, their handwriting is going to be distinctive while their symbols will tend to look pretty much like other people's symbols. For early modern readers it is the other way around--their symbols, and in particular their written hands, are more likely to be recognizably theirs. And that may, finally, account for the trouble they took in drawing manicules. Aside from the rich set of associations these hands brought with them (of speaking gestures, alphabetical indexes, digital calculations, and so on), they were also recognizable as their marks and must have played an important role in the personal process of making a book meaningful. After all, as Diconson put it, "the hand and meaning ever are ally'de."
* This material was first presented at the Birkbeck conference "Book-Trade Consumers: Owners, Annotators and the Signs of Reading" in December 2004. A version of this essay will be published in the proceedings of that conference, to be edited by Michael Harris, Giles Mandelbrote, and Robin Myers and published by Oak Knoll and the British Library. Most of my research has been carried out at the Folger Shakespeare Library, where I have been an NEH Long-Term Fellow for 2004-2005. I am hoping to work it up into a very short--but heavily illustrated--book, and I would be happy to receive corrections and suggestions (please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org). [back]
1. Bartholomeus Anglicus, De proprietatibus rerum, trans. John Trevisa (London: in aedibus Thomae Bertheleti, 1535), I2v. The text here has been significantly modified from the earlier English edition (Westminster: Wynkyn de Worde, 1495): "The second [finger] hyght Index, & Salutaris, also yt is gretter/ for by hym is moche shewynges made, and is namyd Likpot, and also ye techer. For wyth hym we grete, & shewe, and teche all thynges" (i3v). This is the OED's first citation for "index, n." [back]
2. Peter Stallybrass, "Navigating the Book," unpublished lecture (1998), 4; cf. his discussion of indexical technologies in "Books and Scrolls: Navigating the Bible," in Jennifer Andersen and Elizabeth Sauer (eds.), Books and Readers in Early Modern England: Material Studies (Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2002), 42-79 at 43-7. [back]
3. "How to leave masterly marginalia" http://www.levenger.com/levenger/helpfulhints/Marginaliahowto.asp [back]
4. Julian Roberts and Andrew G. Watson (eds.), John Dee's Library Catalogue (London: The Bibliographical Society, 1990): the editors discuss Dee's "pointing hand" on p.25, and examples can be found throughout the facsimile of the catalogue (see item M90 for the De proprietatibus rerum). What Dee was singling out these items for is not clear. [back]
5. Michelle P. Brown, Understanding Illuminated Manuscripts: A Guide to Technical Terms (Malibu and London: J. Paul Getty Museum and The British Library, 1994); M. B. Parkes, Pause and Effect: Introduction to the History of Punctuation in the West (Aldershot: Scolar, 1992). [back]
6. Fournier's 18th-century Manuel Typographique, for instance, has detailed discussions of brackets, rules, flowers, and musical notes, but nothing on manicules, Pierre Simon Fournier, Fournier on Typefounding: The Text of the Manuel Typographique (1764-1766), translated into English and Edited with Notes by Harry Carter (New York: Burt Franklin, 1973). [back]
9. Charles Hasler, "A Show of Hands," Typographica O. S. 8 (1953), 4-11. The journal was edited by Herbert Spencer and published sporadically between 1949 and 1967: Rick Poynor's Typographica (London and Princeton: Laurence King Publishers and Princeton Architectural Press, 2001) provides a history of the journal and reproduces some sample pages from Hasler's article. [back]
12. William Diconson, commendatory verse in John Bulwer, Chirologia: or the Naturall Language of the Hand. Composed of the Speaking Motions, and Discoursing Gestures thereof. Whereunto is added Chironomia: Or, the Art of Manuall Rhetoricke. Consisting of the Naturall Expressions, digested by Art in the HAND, as the chiefest Instrument of Eloquence, by Historicall Manifesto's, Exemplified Out of the Authentique Registers of Common Life, and Civill Conversation. With TYPES, or Chyrograms: A long-wish'd for illustration of this Argument (London: Thomas Harper, 1644), a1v. [back]
13. James Sanford, The Manuell of Epictetus (London: Henry Bynneman, 1567), Sigs. A2r and A3r. Sanford may have been imitating the period's most influential "manual": when Erasmus's best-selling Enchyridion militis christiani was translated into English and published by Wynkyn de Worde in 1533, it was called The Manuell of the Christen Knyght.[back]
.15. Graham Richards, "Bulwer, John," Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, 60 vols. (Oxford: OUP, 2004), 8:670. Cf. Michael Neill, "'Amphitheaters in the Body': Playing with hands on the Shakespearean stage," Shakespeare Survey 48 (1995), 23-50 (esp. 29-34). [back]
16. Quintilian, The Orator's Education, trans. Donald A. Russell for the Loeb Classical Library, 5 vols. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2001), 5:132-3. On the significance of gesture in ancient Rome see Fritz Graf, "Gestures and conventions: the gestures of Roman actors and orators," in A Cultural History of Gesture, eds. Jan Bremmer and Herman Roodenburg (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1991), Chapter 2, and D. Dutch, "Towards a grammar of gesture: A comparison between the types of hand movements of the orator and the actor in Quintilian's Institutio Oratoria 11. 3. 85-88," Gesture 2:2 (2002), 259-281. [back]
17. On Bulwer's project see Jonathan Rée's I See a Voice: Deafness, Language and the Senses--A Philosophical History (New York: Henry Holt, 1999), Chapter 12; J. Wollock, "John Bulwer's (1606-1656) place in the history of the deaf," Historiographica Linguistica 23:1/2 (1996), 1-46; and H. J. Norman, "John Bulwer (fl. 1654), 'The Chirosopher', pioneer in the treatment of the deaf and dumb and in psychology," Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine 36 (1942-3), 589-602. [back]
19. Claire Richter Sherman (ed.), Writing on Hands: Memory and Knowledge in Early Modern Europe (Seattle: University of Washington Press for the Trout Gallery of Dickinson College and the Folger Shakespeare Library, 2000). [back]
20. The thread can be found at http://palimpsest.stanford.edu/byform/mailing-lists/exlibris/1993/06/msg00160.html. [back]
21. The thread can be found at http://palimpsest.stanford.edu/byform/mailing-lists/exlibris/1998/04/msg00077.html. back
22. The InfoD thread is archived at http://lists.webtic.nl/pipermail/infodesign/1998-June/000065.html; the SHARP-L thread is at https://listserv.indiana.edu/cgi-bin/wa-iub.exe?A2=ind0406&L=sharp-l&T=0&F=&S=&P=10387 and the Typophile thread is at http://www.typophile.com/forums/messages/30/53602.html?1101595301. [back]
23. For "indicule," see Carol Clausen's posting to ExLibris on 9 April 1998. "Maniple" appears in Clare R. Kinney, "Thomas Speght's Renaissance Chaucer and the solaas of sentence in Troilus and Criseyde," in Theresa M. Krier (ed.), Refiguring Chaucer in the Renaissance (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1998), 66-84 at 67-8. Maniple is, in fact, a word; but Kinney's concerns are closer to manicules (which are a peculiar feature of Speght's edition) and manciples (stewards or servants, one of whom delivers one of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales) than maniples (the strips of cloth draped over the left arm of the priest during Mass). The use of "pilcrow" for pointing hand may derive from a misleading quotation in Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase & Fable (see John P. Chalmers's posting to ExLibris on 17 June 1993), but given Glaister's definition of the symbol as a marker for new paragraphs it is easy to see how the term might migrate on its own. [back]
24. Gregory A. Pass, Descriptive Catalogue of Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern Manuscripts (Chicago: Association of College and Research Libraries, 2004); Marilena Maniaci, Terminologia del libro manoscritto (Rome, 1996), 201--where "Manicula" is listed alongside "Manina" (another diminutive for "hand"). [back]
25. Cicero, Paradoxa stoicorum (s.xiv2), The Bancroft Library, University of California Berkeley MS 085, fol. 5v. There is a high resolution image of this page at the Digital Scriptorium website: http://dpg.lib.berkeley.edu/webdb/scriptorium/ds_search?ShelfImage=UCB+085. [back]
28. A. C. de la Mare, The Handwriting of Italian Humanists (Oxford: Oxford UP for the Association Internationale de Bibliophilie, 1973), 8, 20 (my emphasis). I am grateful to David Rundle for pointing me to this source. [back]
31. Suzanne Karr, "Constructions both sacred and profane: Serpents, angels, and pointing fingers in Renaissance books with moving parts," Yale University Library Gazette 78:3-4 (April 2004), esp. 124-7. [back]
32. See Norma Levarie, The Art & History of Books (New York: James H. Heinemann, 1968), 164. Similar figures had already been used in Boner's Edelstein, the second illustrated book printed in Germany (Levarie, 165). [back]
33. Philipp Melanchthon, A newe work concernyng both partes of the Sacrament (London: [S. Mierdman for] Richard Jugge, 1548), A2r. Steven Mierdman was an itinerant Protestant printer from the Low Countries: he printed many books for English authors while in Antwerp and Emden and worked for Jugge and several other English printers while living in London between 1548 and 1554 (see the STC, 2nd ed., III:190). I cannot find this manicule in any of his (or Jugge's) other books, but he was unusually fond of using simpler fists to mark the beginnings and endings of texts, and I suspect that he brought them with him to England and helped to establish the vogue there, particularly in religious texts--perhaps playing an important role in the transfer of manicular technology from Continental printers to their English counterparts?. [back]
34. The history that follows is both sketchy and oversimplified. For a fuller account see the documentation at the "DigiBarn" website http://www.digibarn.com, particularly the links on the page devoted to the Xerox Star. [back]
36. Howard Gardner, Frames of Mind: The theory of multiple intelligences (New York: Basic Books, 1983); cf. Bruno Latour, "Visualization and Cognition: Thinking with Eyes and Hands," Knowledge and Society 6 (1986), 1-40. [back]
37. The same technique was used simply to mark new material in a later edition of Conrad Heresbach's The Whole Art of Husbandry, published in 1631: a note on the title-page read, "All the new Additions you shall find to begin with this marke [pointing hand] and to end with this [star]." It was also possible to use the manicule to mark the omission rather than the addition of text in a new edition: in a letter to Henry Stubbes regarding the new translation of Leviathan, Hobbes explained, "where you find this ([pointing hand]) I haue omitted a word which I conceiued redundant in ye English" (Thomas Hobbes, The Correspondence, ed. Noel Malcolm. Vol. I: 1622-1659 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994), 271) [Thanks to Timothy Raylor.] [back]
41. Cf. Yann Sordet, "Repérages et navigation dans l'espace du livre ancien," on the "histoire du livre à l'enssib" website http://histoire.enssib.fr/5outils/Sordet/sordet.html. [back]
42. G. K. Hunter, "The Marking of Sententiae in Elizabethan Printed Plays, Poems, and Romances," The Library 5th Series 6:3-4 (1951), 171-88 at 171. Hunter refers to this practice as "gnomic pointing" (172ff.), drawing on gnome's original sense (a pithy precept). [back]
43. Sir Philip Sidney, The Countess of Pembroke's Arcadia (London: John Windet for William Ponsonby, 1590), Book I, Chap. 19, sig.M1v. Cited by Adam Smyth in "Profit & Delight": Printed Miscellanies in England, 1640-1682 (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2004), XX. [back]
44. Charles Butler, Oratoriae Libri Duo (Oxford: William Turner, 1633), A4v. I have drawn on the translation of Fred Schurink in his D.Phil. thesis, "Education and Reading in Elizabethan and Jacobean England" (Oxford, 2004), 62. [back]
45. In the dedicatory epistle to Sir Robert Cecil he explained that he has "noted withall most of his Sentences and Prouerbes" (a1r). In fact, manicules appeared in some sections of the earlier texts, and Joseph Dane has carefully studied their use as evidence in the transmission of Chaucer's works through the 16th century ("Fists and Filiations in Early Chaucer Folios, 1532-1602," Studies in Bibliography 51 (1998), 48-62). He suggests that Speght's copy-text was a copy of Stow's 1561 edition, with the small and incoherent selection of printed fists supplemented by the insertion of systematic manuscript manicules that were then translated into print. [back]
47. See the account in Robert C. Evans, Habits of Mind: Evidence and Effects of Ben Jonson's Reading (Lewisburg: Bucknell University Press, 1995), Chapter 4 ("Ben Jonson's Chaucer"). For Jonson's annotations in his 1617 Spenser Folio, see James A. Riddell and Stanley Stewart, Jonson's Spenser: Evidence and Historical Criticism (Pittsburgh: Duquesne UP, 1995). [back]
48. Francis Bacon, De Augmentis Scientiarum (1605), cit. J. Wollock, "John Bulwer (1606-1656) and the significance of gesture in 17th-century theories of language and cognition," Gesture 2:2 (2002); Jean-Claude Schmitt, "The rationale of gestures in the West: third to thirteenth centuries," in A Cultural History of Gesture, 62. [back]