The term illumination, as it pertains to printing, may be a new one to you (as it was to me before launching Reusable Art). It is the artistic addition of colorful letters and pages elements to texts. It was quite common to find illuminated letters and other page decorations in Bibles printed in the 12th Century.
That’s when this fancy letter M is from – the 12th Century. While the author of A Practical Treatise on the Art of Illuminating did not indicate what sort of text this letter came from, we can only guess that it must have been a very expensive and massive work. Keep in mind, the Gutenberg Bible was not printed until 1455. That means the work in which this fancy letter M appeared was completely transcribed by hand.
The author of the work, Marcus Ward, was illuminator to Queen Victoria.
Of all of the fancy letter images on Reusable Art, this one is far and away the largest. You could easily resize it smaller to fit your projects. But, why not print it out at full size and turn it into a bit of wall art?
This image is copyright free and in the public domain anywhere that extends copyrights 70 years after death or at least 120 years after publication when the original illustrator is unknown.