Calligraphy and Illumination


This is less of a guild, more an informal group of interested scribes of all skill levels, who learn and practice the arts of calligraphy and illumination (sometimes referred to in the Society as ‘C&I’).

Thamesreach is home to a number of scribes. Some are generalists, who draw, paint and do penwork; others specialise in calligraphy only, or artwork only.

We hold scriptoriums (periodic gatherings for scribes) at weekends, to work on current projects, and share our skills.

The best way to learn scribing is by trying it yourself. If there’s interest, we can arrange ‘have-a-go’ sessions at revels or at weekend sessions. One person is enough to make a class worthwhile!

Drachenwald is in the happy position of issuing original, handmade documents (‘scrolls’) to those who receive awards from the Crown, its principalities and its baronies. If you are already a Society scribe, know what you enjoy doing, and want to work on principality or kingdom scrolls, please contact the principality signet, or the kingdom signet clerk.

Useful reading

Drachenwald signet clerk pages: includes basic scroll standards for materials, sizes, etc. plus guidance on layout, if you’ve never made a scroll before.

Dragon Scribes: the shared blog where Drachenwald scribes post their work, current reading, and links. Active scribes can apply to become contributors. An excellent selection of links is available from this blog, in the right-hand column.

FAQ about starting scribing: A bit more information, and answers to some questions you might have about getting started.


Many collections worldwide are now digitised and available online. Some ‘local’ ones:

British Library Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts

Oxford University Early Manuscripts – frustratingly, these are not searchable, and are organised by which library owns them, rather than by date, place of origin or even topic. However, the scans are excellent, and stand up well to being enlarged.

Heidelburg University collection – German, with some English translation