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VADE MECUM

The phrase means 'goes with me' in Latin and refers to a portable book (often suspended from a belt), frequently consisting of leaves folded in a concertina or fold-out format. Such books could be consulted easily by physicians, for example, and often contain CALENDARS, almanacs, and medical information. See also ASTRONOMICAL / ASTROLOGICAL TEXTS , COMPUTUS TEXTS, GIRDLE BOOK, and MEDICAL TEXTS.

VELLUM See PARCHMENT.

VERE DIGNUM MONOGRAM See MISSAL and SACRAMENTARY.

VERNACULAR

Lansdowne MS 851, f. 2 Egerton MS 737, f. 1 Arundel MS 294, f. 13

A vernacular language is a regional language, as distinct from an international literary language, such as Latin and Greek. Throughout the Middle Ages certain texts, notably those of a liturgical character, were generally in Latin (although biblical texts were gradually translated into the vernacular). The development of Western vernacular literacy began at least as early as the sixth century in Ireland and CELTIC Britain and spread to England in the following century. Spain and Frankia followed suit later. The growth of secular literacy beginning in the twelfth century stimulated an increased use of the vernacular in texts. See also BIBLE.

VERSO

Stowe MS 30, f. 50v

The back of a FOLIO or leaf, abbreviated as v and sometimes denoted b.

VOLVELLE

Egerton MS 848, f. 22

A revolving wheel or wheels of PARCHMENT or PAPER (often within a book or attached to a BOOKMARKER) that carries information of a computational, astronomical, or astrological character.

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