The Society of
Scribes & Illuminators

Our disciplines

Welcome to the home of Calligraphy

The SSI is the oldest Calligraphy Society in the world, founded over 100 years ago at the beginning of the modern revival of edged pen writing. Over the century calligraphy has flourished in dynamic and varied ways: formal documents and public lettering, print and digital applications, personal and unique artworks.

SSI Fellowship

Work by elected Fellows of the SSI is, and has been for over a century, the standard bearer for calligraphy and illumination. Fellowship is awarded by the Fellows to those whose work is of high professional and technical standard as well as showing individuality and originality.


One of the SSI’s aims is to promote excellent work, through exhibitions or commissions. 

Take a look at our gallery to see examples of fine contemporary work in calligraphy and  related disciplines.

Library & Records

The SSI has played an important part in the history of the development of calligraphy and illumination. Many leading calligraphic artists are Fellows: discover more in our records. The library is an extensive collection of publications over 150 years.



About the SSI

the oldest Calligraphy Society in the world

Initially membership of the Society was by election only, but today the SSI welcomes all those who are interested in calligraphy. Fellows are still elected on merit of their work and Lay Members take an active part in meetings and exhibitions.

The SSI offers support and encouragement to new learners and those developing their practice, through its opportunities for education. Regular publications of The Scribe inform and keep members up to date with new ideas and a wider perspective on all aspects of calligraphy.

Why Calligraphy & Illumination?

Calligraphy is in essence writing by hand with a tool, originally a quill, which influences and shapes the look and impact of letterforms. An understanding of this underlies almost all of the lettering we see in public use today.

A handwritten script conveys more than the communication of a message or text. Calligraphy naturally incorporates emotion and energy, encourages personal expression and interpretation and evokes a thoughtful response from the calligrapher and the viewer.

Calligraphy is the basis of other lettering disciplines, including letter carving in stone and wood, letter engraving on metal and glass, sign writing and type design. Calligraphy and illumination remains at the forefront of important Royal and Parliamentary documents, using the finest of traditional skills and materials.


Our Fellows

Years Old

Join us for our

Events & Education

be part of the ssi


The SSI welcomes anyone who is interested in calligraphy and illumination, at whatever level. Membership gives you access to publications, use of the SSI Library and up-to-date information regarding courses and events. In addition, Lay Members can take part in their annual exhibition and Fellows have the right to exhibit their work in public SSI exhibitions.

Lay Members

 Full membership of The Society of Scribes & Illuminators .


For those who do not wish to exhibit work or attend events.


Discount for full-time UK calligraphy or design students.


Fellowship is voted by peers in the SSI.