The first method distinguishes between uncial or majuscule, and cursive or minuscule; the second between papyrus, vellum or parchment, and paper (for further details see Manuscript and Palaeography); and the third distinguishes mainly between Gospels, Acts and Epistles (with or without the Apocalypse), New Testaments (the word in this connexion being somewhat broadly interpreted), lectionaries and commentaries.
It is based chiefly on the uncial Greek alphabet, from which indeed most of the letters are obviously derived, and several orthographical peculiarities, e.g.
He abandons the practice of making a distinction between uncial and minuscule, on the ground that for textual criticism the style of writing is less important than the date and contents of a MS. To indicate these he divided MSS.
In gold uncial letters upon a purple ground, as distinguished from the vermilion cursive letters of the rest of the MS. With this the sacrifice proper was concluded.
B and in the other uncial MSS., (b) that preserved in the cursive codex 248 (Holmes and Parsons).
Demotic.Widely varying degrees of cursiveness are at all periods observable in hieratic; but, about the XXVLth Dynasty, which inaugurated a great commercial era, there was something like a definite parting between the uncial hieratic and the most cursive form afterwards known as demotic. The employment of hieratic was thenceforth almost confined to the copying of religious and other traditional texts on papyrus, while demotic was used not only for all business but also for writing literary and even religious texts in the popular language.
For the restoration of the Greek text we have, besides many Greek MSS., uncial and cursive, the old Latin, the Syro-Hexaplar, the Armenian, Sahidic and Ethiopic versions, as well as a considerable number of quotations in the Greek and Latin Fathers.