Line Filler

Line fillers were often added by scribes at the end of a line that did not reach entirely to the right margin. The function is mostly decorative, to avoid any unsightly short lines on the page, but here the filler doubles as an indicator that the reader has reached the end of the epistle. Space fillers also appear in non-literary texts with a more functional role; there, the function was to prevent anyone from adding to the text at a later time. In the modern world, this is similar to the role of the stroke we often add after the dollar amount when writing checks. Notice how in the example above, the scribe has also elongated the upper stroke of the sigma to help fill out some of the available space.

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