Stages in the Revision Process

A text extract from the Ormulum will be shown in six different versions, reflecting the successive stages in Orm’s revision process. For a description of the how the text has been coded to represent the original manuscript in HTML, please refer to the coding conventions. As you proceed through the text, a marker () indicates the passage that Orm revised next. By clicking the marker you will make the next stage in the revision process appear in the opposite frame.

The text extract, which is taken from columns 31 and 32, as well as Inserted leaf 5, in MS Junius 1, contains a description of the Holy of Holies in the Temple of Jerusalem, and of the rituals performed there by the High Priest on the Day of Atonement.

To view two successive versions of the text at a time, please follow [this link]

To view each version of the text in parallel with this description, please follow the links given below.

The text is first displayed as Orm initially wrote it (black on screen). [Version 1]

In the following displays we can then see how the text changes as Orm revises and edits it. The following stages can be discerned:

  1. Deletion of references to the table of showbread (hali3 bræd/hall3hedd bræd); replaced by references to an oferrwerrc (a ‘superstructure’, i.e. the Mercy-seat, a golden covering placed upon the Ark of the Covenant) (vertically in outer margin (2 places); red on screen). [Version 2]
  2. Insertion within the first oferrwerrc addition of a mention of the Latin name (propitiatoriumm) of the oferwerrc plus an explanation of its etymology (Inserted leaf 5; blue on screen). [Version 3]
  3. Deletion of references to effigies of seraphyn; replaced by more verbose references to cherubyn (horizontally in bottom margin (2 places); dark green on screen). [Version 4]
  4. Deletion of the formula Swa summ þe boc uss kiþeþþ; replaced by the contextually more apt Wel & wurrþlike 3emmde (vertically between columns; magenta on screen). [Version 5]
  5. Corrections: a) þe boc changed to soþ boc; b) sellfenn as a nominative form corrected to sellf (with compensatory addition of a monosyllabic word in each case (himm and þær, respectively)) (horizontally next to deleted item; light green on screen). NB! I have not as yet been able to determine the internal ordering of a) and b), so for the time being they are lumped together under 5. [Version 6]