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Cursive writing a to z

Cursive writing a to z

Cursive (also known as script, among other names[a]) is any style of penmanship in which some characters are written joined together in a flowing manner, generally for the purpose of making writing faster, in contrast to block letters. It varies in functionality and modern-day usage across languages and regions; being used both publicly in artistic and formal documents as well as in private communication. Formal cursive is generally joined, but casual cursive is a combination of joins and pen lifts. The writing style can be further divided as "looped", "italic" or "connected".

Example of classic American business cursive handwriting known as Spencerian script, from 1884

The cursive method is used with many alphabets due to infrequent pen lifting and beliefs that it increases writing speed. In some alphabets, many or all letters in a word are connected, sometimes making a word one single complex stroke.

A study in 2013 discovered that speed of writing cursive is the same as print, regardless of which handwriting the child had learnt first.

Descriptions Edit
Cursive is a style of penmanship in which the symbols of the language are written in a conjoined and/or flowing manner, generally for the purpose of making writing faster. This writing style is distinct from "print-script" using block letters, in which the letters of a word are unconnected and in Roman/Gothic letter-form rather than joined-up script. Not all cursive copybooks join all letters: formal cursive is generally joined, but casual cursive is a combination of joins and pen lifts. In the Arabic, Syriac, Latin, and Cyrillic alphabets, many or all letters in a word are connected (while other must not), sometimes making a word one single complex stroke. In Hebrew cursive and Roman cursive, the letters are not connected. In Maharashtra, there was a version of cursive called 'Modi' to write Marathi language.

Subclasses Edit
Ligature Edit

Ligature is writing the letters of words with lines connecting the letters so that one does not have to pick up the pen or pencil between letters. Commonly some of the letters are written in a looped manner to facilitate the connections. In common printed Greek texts, the modern small letter fonts are called "cursive" (as opposed to uncial) though the letters do not connect.

Looped Edit

Looped cursive as taught in Britain in the mid-20th century

In looped cursive penmanship, some ascenders and descenders have loops which provide for joins. This is generally what people refer to when they say "cursive".[citation needed]


Cursive italic penmanship—derived from chancery cursive—uses non-looped joins or no joins. In italic cursive, there are no joins from g, j, q, or y, and a few other joins are discouraged.[2][failed verification] Italic penmanship became popular in the 15th-century Italian Renaissance. The term "italic" as it relates to handwriting is not to be confused with italic typed letters. Many, but not all, letters in the handwriting of the Renaissance were joined, as most are today in cursive italic.

Old Roman cursive
Roman cursive is a form of handwriting (or a script) used in ancient Rome and to some extent into the Middle Ages. It is customarily divided into old (or ancient) cursive, and new cursive. Old Roman cursive, also called majuscule cursive and capitalis cursive, was the everyday form of handwriting used for writing letters, by merchants writing business accounts, by schoolchildren learning the Latin alphabet, and even by emperors issuing commands. New Roman, also called minuscule cursive or later cursive, developed from old cursive. It was used from approximately the 3rd century to the 7th century, and uses letter forms that are more recognizable to modern eyes; "a", "b", "d", and "e" have taken a more familiar shape, and the other letters are proportionate to each other rather than varying wildly in size and placement on a line.

Main article: The Greek alphabet has had several cursive forms in the course of its development. In antiquity, a cursive form of handwriting was used in writing on papyrus. It employed slanted and partly connected letter forms as well as many ligatures. Some features of this handwriting were later adopted into Greek minuscule, the dominant form of handwriting in the medieval and early modern era. In the 19th and 20th centuries, an entirely new form of cursive Greek, more similar to contemporary Western European cursive scripts, was developed.

Cursive in English letter from 1894

Cursive writing was used in English before the Norman conquest. Anglo-Saxon Charters typically include a boundary clause written in Old English in a cursive script. A cursive handwriting style—secretary hand—was widely used for both personal correspondence and official documents in England from early in the 16th century.

Cursive handwriting developed into something approximating its current form from the 17th century, but its use was neither uniform, nor standardized either in England itself or elsewhere in the British Empire. In the English colonies of the early 17th century, most of the letters are clearly separated in the handwriting of William Bradford, though a few were joined as in a cursive hand. In England itself, Edward Cocker had begun to introduce a version of the French ronde style, which was then further developed and popularized throughout the British Empire in the 17th and 18th centuries as round hand by John Ayers and William Banson.[8]

In the American colonies, on the eve of their independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain, it is notable that Thomas Jefferson joined most, but not all the letters when drafting the United States Declaration of Independence. However, a few days later, Timothy Matlack professionally re-wrote the presentation copy of the Declaration in a fully joined, cursive hand. Eighty-seven years later, in the middle of the 19th century, Abraham Lincoln drafted the Gettysburg Address in a cursive hand that would not look out of place today.

Not all such cursive, then or now, joined all of the letters within a word.

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