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22.09.22 Lindisfarne Gospels Workshop

The children created symbols from their feelings which they then used to decorate letters, just like the monks used symbols to decorate the letters in the gospels. This meant that even the people who couldn’t read the gospels, knew that the gospels were bringing good luck and hope. The children used a feelings pencil to draw happy lines, sad lines and angry lines and then found symbols and shapes where these lines intersected. The symbols and shapes were then drawn on the letters as decoration.

We then explored the ‘Mystery Box’ which contained some of the materials the monks would have gathered from the natural world around them to make the gospels.

The black letters in the gospels was made from oak galls. They came from an oak tree & were crushed & mixed with iron salt to make black ink.

Verdigris the vivid green ink was made by heating copper above vinegar which oxidised it & turned the copper green.

Vergoat the light green colour was made by scraping the minerals and crystals from the local rocks. 

Orpiment  was a yellow powder & was used to paint the golden parts of the gospels. There was only a tiny amount of gold leaf used in the gospels as most of the golden colour is from orpiment.