3rd grade artists created their own Illuminated Letters. We looked at the Book of Kells and discussed how "illuminated" means filled with light. The original illuminated letters used gold leafing in the illustrations, so as the pages were turned the letters reflected light and appeared to be glowing. These manuscripts (manu meaning 'by hand' and script meaning 'writing') were made by many people. A parchmenter made the paper out of leather, a scribe wrote every word by hand, an illustrator created the drawings and a book binder sewed all the pages together. Only people with great wealth and power had books. Illuminated Manuscripts had fanciful artwork that matched the story in the text. We chose one letter, created a pattern around the border and filled our drawings with images that matched our personalities. These were created with markers and watercolor paints.