ArtLex Art Dictionary




sscroll - A roll, as of papyrus or paper, used as a support for painting or writing.

Any scroll meant to be viewed by manually unrolling may be called a handscroll. A scroll intended for continuous exhibition upon a wall may be called a hanging scroll.

A rotulus is a long manuscript scroll. Rotuli were used by the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, among others. There were predecessors to codices in the evolution of books.

Here's a blank scroll of parchment.

Examples of scrolls:


see thumbnail to rightAttributed to Han Gan (Chinese, active 742-756), Night-Shining White, T'ang dynasty (618-907), 8th century, handscroll, ink on paper, 12 1/8 x 13 3/8 inches (30.8 x 34 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. Night-Shining White is the name of this horse, owned by the emperor of China. See Chinese art.



see thumbnail to leftMi Fu (Chinese, 1052-1107), Poem Written in a Boat on the Wu River, Northern Sung dynasty (960-1127), c. 1100, handscroll, ink on paper, 12 1/4 inches x 18 feet 3 1/4 inches (31.1 x 557 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. See Chinese art and horizontal.



see thumbnail to leftWen Zhengming (Chinese, 1470-1559), Bamboo, Orchids, Rock, and Calligraphy, Ming dynasty, c. 1530, handscroll; ink on paper; signature: seals of the artist in inscription; seals: (upper) Wen Zhengming yin, (lower) Zheng-Zhung, Worcester Art Museum, MA. See calligraphy.



see thumbnail to rightDao Ji (Shitao) (Chinese, 1642 - 1707 or 1708), Autumn Landscape, Ching dynasty, 1701, hanging scroll; ink and color on paper, signatures: Zing-Xiang chen ren, Dadizu, and Shitao; seals: five of the artist, two of the collector Ouyang Lin dated 1907, three of collectors in lower left, and four in the lower right corner, Worcester Art Museum, MA.



see thumbnail to leftKaigetsudo Doshin (Japanese, active 1700-16), Courtesan, Edo period, hanging scroll; ink and opaque color on paper; signature: Nippon giga Kaigetsu; matsuyo Doshin zu (a pleasure picture in Japanese style by Doshin, a last leaf of Kaigetsu); seal: Ando, Worcester Art Museum, MA. See kakemono and ukiyo-e.




Also see panorama and fan.



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