Ligature

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ligature

1. Surgery a thread or wire for tying around a vessel, duct, etc., as for constricting the flow of blood to a part
2. Music
a. a slur or the group of notes connected by it
b. (in plainsong notation) a symbol indicating two or more notes grouped together

Ligature

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

A magical spell used to cause impotency. It is also sometimes referred to as an aiguillette, from its use in sixteenth and seventeenth century France. In Italian Witchcraft it is called ghirlanda delle streghe; in Latin, vaecordia. Ligature is also the name given to the state of impotency caused by this black magic.

A length of cord or thread is tied with knots, with the desired effect in the mind of the spell-caster. It was suspected that one time this might be done was during a wedding ceremony. In fact, marriages were annulled when the husband was unable to perform and ligature was suspected. Francesco-Maria Guazzo, in his Compendium Maleficarum (1608), gives seven headings under which ligature might have occurred: When one of the married couple is made hateful to the other, or both hateful to each other. When some bodily hindrance keeps a husband and wife apart in different places, or when some thing or phantasm is interposed. When the vital spirit is hindered from flowing to the penis and the emission of semen is prevented.

When the semen is not fertile. When a man's penis becomes flabby whenever he wishes to perform the sex act. When certain natural drugs are given a woman to prevent her from conceiving. When the female genitals become narrow or close up, or when the male organ retracts.

As can be seen from the sixth instance above, sometimes potions were administered in addition to knots being tied. However, the tying of knots was generally believed to be sufficient to cause the loss of erection, impotence, or sterility.

Ligature

 

(1) Decorative script in which the letters are linked into an unbroken ornament. Ligatures were used to decorate titles in ancient Byzantine and Slavic manuscripts and in books published in Russia before the 18th century; they were most often placed at the beginning of a text. They were also occasionally used in the applied arts as ornamentation on dishes. Two methods—the contraction of letters (by drawing together and uniting parts of letters or by the subordination of one letter to another) and the decoration of letters with ornamental elements—were used in writing ligatures. The ligature was first used in Byzantine books of the mid-11th century, by the South Slavs in the first half of the 13th century, and in Russian books of the late 14th century. By the late 15th century the ligature had become an accepted calligraphic method of designing Russian books, especially in Novgorod and Pskov and in the Trinity-St. Sergius Monastery. The best examples of ligatures were created in Moscow in the mid-16th century during the reign of Ivan IV in the calligraphic workshop directed by Metropolitan Makarii, and also in Novgorod. The books of Ivan Fedorov, an early Russian printer, are famous for their printed ligatures. The art of making ligatures fell into decline in the 18th century and was preserved only in books of the Old Believers in the 18th and 19th centuries.

(2) The combination of two or more letters into a single compound symbol or a fused group of symbols (for example, in Indian Devanagari script).

REFERENCES

Cherepnin, L. V. Russkaia paleogrqfiia. Moscow, 1956.
Shchepkin, V. N. “Viaz’.” Drevnosti: Trudy Moskovskogo arkheologicheskogo obshchestva, 1904, vol. 20, issue 1.

A. G. SHITSGAL


Ligature

 

(1) A letter or symbol of phonetic transcription, which is formed by combining two letters, or two transcription symbols, into one, for example, æ in Danish, Icelandic, and Norwegian, and β in German.

(2) A single written symbol indicating a combination of letters, a syllable, or a word.

(3) In printing, two or several letters printed as a single character. This kind of ligature is encountered in Cyrillic and in foreign typefaces (for example, Æ, the printing of A and E as a single letter). In typesetting, a ligature is two letters cast as a single type character.


Ligature

 

in medicine, the thread tied around a blood vessel or left in a wound after an operation to join tissues. It was proposed in the first century by A. C. Celsus. It is used to stop or prevent bleeding and to apply a ligation suture. Silk, polycaprolactam fiber, cotton and linen threads, and catgut are used for ligatures.


Ligature

 

a sign in musical notation; an arched line, curving either up or down. A ligature connecting two notes of the same pitch requires that they be played as one note of combined duration. A ligature under a group of notes of various pitch directs that they be executed in a connected fashion (legato) and separately from surrounding notes or groups; in vocal music, all notes united by a ligature should be sung as one syllable.

ligature

[′lig·ə·chər]
(medicine)
A cord or thread used for tying vessels and ducts.

ligature

Two or more typeface characters that are designed as a single unit (physically touch). Fi, ffi, ae and oe are common ligatures.