A capital letter; literally a large letter. "Majuscule" looks like the complement to "minuscule," and the resemblance is no coincidence. "Minuscule" appeared in the early 18th century as a word for certain ancient and medieval writing styles which had "small forms." Eventually, "miniscule" came to be used for any lowercase letter, and gradually acquired a more general adjectival use for anything very small. "Majuscule" is the counterpart to "minuscule" when it comes to letters, but it never developed a broader sense (despite the fact that its Latin ancestor "majusculus" has the broad meaning "rather large"). The adjective "majuscule" also exists (as does "majuscular"). Not surprisingly, the adjective shares the noun's specificity, referring only to large letters or to a style using such letters.(pr. MA-jə-skyool or mə-JUS-kyool)Example:French, from Works of Saint Augustin, detail of a page from a manuscript on vellum in ten volumes, c. 1134. Library of Troyes, France. The Library calls it manuscript 40. A large, decorated "D" majuscule begins the text: "DOMINO ILLUSTRI ET MERITO PRESTANTISSIMO FILIO VOLUSIANO AUGUSTINUS EPISCOPUS." (very loosely: "The Lord is seen as He deserves to be, as on the speediest wings by Bishop Augustin, His child." [email your version!]) This entire text is comprised of majuscule letters, albeit none as colossal as the first one. Click the link at the title to see more of this page, which includes a section of miniscule letters.Also see incunabulum, lowercase, miniature, minuscule, size, and uppercase.

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