Pliny asserts that an ingenious artist wrote the whole of the Iliad on so small a piece of parchment that it might be enclosed within the compass of a nut-shell. Cicero also records the same thing. This doubtless might be done on a strip of thin parchment, and rolling it compactly.

Heylin, in his life of Charles I., says that in Queen Elizabeth's time, a person wrote the Ten Commandments, the Creed, the Pater Noster, the Queen's name, and the date, within the compass of a penny, which he presented to her Majesty, together with a pair of spectacles of such an artificial make, that by their help she plainly discerned every letter. One Francis Almonus wrote the Creed, and the first fourteen verses of the Gospel of St. John, on a piece of parchment no larger than a penny. In the library of St. John's College, Oxford, is a picture of Charles I. done with a pen, the lines of which contain all the psalms, written in a legible hand.

"At Halston, in Shropshire, the seat of the Myttons, is preserved a carving much resembling that mentioned by Walpole in his Anecdotes of Painting, vol. ii., p. 42. It is the portrait of Charles I., full-faced, cut on a peach-stone; above, is a crown; his face, and clothes which are of a Vandyck dress are painted; on the reverse is an eagle transfixed with an arrow, and round it is this motto: I feathered this arrow. The whole is most admirably executed, and is set in gold, with a crystal on each side. It probably was the work of Nicholas Bryot, a great graver of the mint in the time of Charles I."—Pennant's Wales.

In the Royal Museum at Copenhagen is a common cherry-stone, on the surface of which are cut two hundred and twenty heads!