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Here is the spell:

Shelfmark of the Ephemeral Catalogue

Intelligo ___

You are able to sense which written texts within the target room contain a verbatim phrase. (See table for determining ease factor roll for determining appropriate phrase related to topic of interest)

For as long as you maintain this spell, the text or texts that contain the phrase being searched for are surrounded by small motes of light resembling dust reflecting sunlight. These motes are a purely cosmetic effect.

  • Range: Voice
  • Duration: Concentration
  • Target: Room

What is the appropriate form for this spell?

I am having difficulty determining the appropriate form for the spell.

  • Animal? The pages are vellum.
  • Mentem? Detecting the thoughts the authors put down on the pages.
  • Herbam? For pages that are papyrus or paper.
  • Terram? To detect the soot or iron-gall ink of the writing.
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If we consider this a spell that informs the user of a particular visual artefact in a room, then it becomes clearer: Intelligo Imaginem, with requisites if particular things must be searched.

If we need to "see" phrases in a vellum book, I would say Intelligo Imaginem(Animal), with +1 Magnitude because it's an intricate/complex effect (this wording is used in some books, serf's parma). I would also indicate that the phrase targeted must be written, not spoken, as magic cannot comprehend information, it can only present it, so the magic would have no idea how to transcribe a spoken phrase correctly to its written variant (consider homonyms for example).

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  • \$\begingroup\$ This make sense. AM5 pg 143 has a relevant example "A clairvoyance spell, therefore, is Intellego Imaginem because it detects real images" \$\endgroup\$ – GcL Sep 16 at 0:08

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