Bringing the Parts Together to Make an Illuminated Page
The page below shows how the various elements of a page are brought together. There are different sizes of decorated initials, indicating the relative importance of the different parts of the text. Red lettering, rubrics, frequently introduce or end the main body of the text. Contrasting this page with the example from the Lindisfarne Gospels, the text here seems to be more tightly packed. This may be due to the fashions of the time or, more likely, financial considerations. Calfskin vellum has always been expensive and an uncommon commodity. One skin of calfskin vellum today will set you back well over £100. Lindisfarne is very extravagant with its use of vellum, consisting of 259 vellum folios (some pages are missing). You need considerable resources to produce a manuscript on vellum in the style of some of the early Gospels.