Informational Site NetworkInformational Site Network

  -  Home  -  Articles  -  

Anonymous Letters And Disguised Hands
Classes Of Handwriting
Forged Literary Autographs
Forged Signatures
Handwriting And Expression
How To Examine A Writing
Measurement And Its Appliances
Paper And Watermarks
Pencils And Stylographs
The Alphabet In Detail
The Capitals
The Expert In The Witness-box
The Principles Of Handwriting Analysis


In order to render the description of a writing perfectly clear, a
system of terminology is adopted which is invariable. That is, the same
terms are always employed in indicating the same parts of a letter.
These are simple, and for the most part self-explanatory, so that no
effort is required to commit them to memory.

Every part of a letter has a distinctive name, so that it would be
possible to reproduce a script character very closely by a verbal

The following are the terms used in describing a letter:--

_Letter_ means the whole of any script character, capital or small. For
the sake of brevity in notes and reports capital is written Cp.; small,

_Arc._--An arc is the curve formed _inside_ the top loop or curve, as in
_f_, _m_, _h_, _o_. In _o_, the inside top half of the letter is the
arc; the inside bottom half is the hook.

_Buckle._--The buckle is the separate stroke added to such letters as
_k_, _f_, and capitals _A_, _F_, _H_.

_Beard._--The beard is the preliminary stroke that often appears in
capital letters.

_Body._--The body of a letter is that portion of it which rests on the
line and could be contained in a small circle. For example, in a small
_d_ the body consists of the circle and the final upward curve or toe.
In a small _g_ the body is the circle minus the tail.

_Eye_ is the small circle formed by the continuation of a stroke as in
the shoulder _r_.

_Finals._--A final is the finishing stroke not carried beyond the shank
in capitals, and in a few smalls like _y_, _g_, _z_.

_Foot._--The foot of a letter is that portion of it that rests on the
line. Small _m_ has three feet, _h_ has two, etc.

_Hook._--The hook is the inside of a bottom curve. It is the opposite of
the arc.

_Link._--The link is that portion of the stroke which connects two

_Broken link._--A broken link is a disconnection in the link joining two

_Loop._--A loop is that portion of a letter which forms the top or tail.
Unlooped tops and tails are called "barred." For example, small _f_ has
two loops, top and bottom; _f_, _h_, _l_ have one top loop; _g_, _y_,
_z_ have one bottom loop.

_Shank._--The shank of a letter is the principal long downstroke that
forms the backbone.

_Shoulder._--The shoulder is the outside of the top of the curve as seen
in small _m_, _n_, _o_, _h_. Small _m_ has three shoulders, _n_ two, _h_

_Spur._--The spur is to the small letter what the beard is to the
capital. It is the initial stroke.

_Tick._--A tick is a small stroke generally at the beginning of a
letter, sometimes at the end.

_Toe._--The toe is the concluding upward stroke of a letter, as seen in
small _e_, _n_, _h_, &c.

_Whirl._--The whirl is the upstroke in all looped letters. It is a
continuation of the spur in _b_, _h_, _f_, _l_, and is always an

Next: Classes Of Handwriting

Previous: Measurement And Its Appliances

Add to Add to Reddit Add to Digg Add to Add to Google Add to Twitter Add to Stumble Upon
Add to Informational Site Network

Viewed 5815