David Philip Lindsley.

A short course in business shorthand .. online

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Amanuenses, Clerks, Secretaries, Profes-
sional and Business Men.









No.^UNION.PUCf,,.^ ,,,,, N

Entered according to act of Congress, in the year 1888,

lu the office of the Libririan of Congress,



This is not a first book; though, if the student wishes to begin

in the middle of the subject and work both ways, this is just the

book he will want to commence with. To aid him as much as

possible in this course, should he prefer it, an introductory chapter

is given which epitomizes the author's treatment of the Simple

2 Style. Still he does not recommend the student to trust to this

**J epitome; he should learn the Simple Style from some of the com-

^ plete works on that style; such as the Elements or Exercise Book.



Between the territory occupied by the Simple Style and that

1 occupied by the Reporting Style there is a wide field, and one just
now most hopeful. It is believed that at least nine-tenths of our

> students of shorthand need, and desire, an intermediate or business
style, in which a fair rate of speed can be secured with the least

z loss of time in learning, and with the greatest degree of legibility

o and accuracy.

To provide just such a style has been the object of the author
from the first. The easy reporting style written twenty-five years

3 ago, and used in manuscript, was written with this design. The

P Note-taker published in 1872 aimed to solve the same problem;

H but the author was carried beyond his original intention by the
great desire of many persons to master a reporting style. This
stenographic pressure led to the publication, in 1882, of the HAND
BOOK, which satisfied the demands of the reporting style, but left
the great middle style entirely unrepresented.


Four years ago the author prepared a series of
for teaching a Business Style which he has used in his private
classes ever since. But for various reasons their publication has
been postponed until the present time. It seems almost unac-
countable that the publication of the style which the author has
always regarded as of "the greatest use to so large a number,"
should have been delayed so long. There are, however, doubtless,
some compensating advantages in the delay. Something must
have been learned through the extended experimentation of the
past years. Doubtless the style here represented is the more per-
fect for the delay, and the manner of presenting it, it is hoped, has
also been improved.

The style here represented is adapted to the wants of at least
nine-tenths of all professional writers of shorthand in the country.
The cpurt reporter is necessary, but only a limited number of
places are open for this work. Thousands of literary and profes-
sional men need a still easier style, but will not cultivate it. Nearly
all Amanuenses need just this style, and thousands of students
who are pursuing courses of higher education also need it. With
so wide a field to fill, it must not be supposed that all who use it
will stop at the same point of development, but this is not neces-
sary. This work will put all on the road to the speediest and
surest success.

The author takes pleasure in offering this little work to the
teachers of shorthand writing, as the best expression of his method
of teaching yet made. The work is so arranged as to be adapted
to any plan of instruction which the teacher may choose; and as
every exercise has its accompanying key, it can be used by the
pupil without a teacher better than any previous work.

Assured that its use will greatly facilitate the study and prac-
tice of the art, the author sends with it his heartiest greetings,
begging the friends of other days to give it a kindly reception and
candid criticism, and to continue to co-operate with him in intro-
ducing the advantages of the art to the millions who are waiting
to receive it at our hands.


Philadelphia, Pa., October 1st, 1888.


Introduction Application of the terms System and Style

Natural Styles, ...... 9

Actual Styles, ..... 9

Two Theories of Teaching, . . . .10

A Knowledge of the Simple Style Useful to Amanuenses, 11
Method of Study, . . . .12,13

Length of Courses of Study New Principles, . . 14, 15



Section 1. Alphabetical Drills Par. 1, Consonants-, Par. 2,

Vocals; Par. 3, Compounds of the El, Ar and Qua Series;

Par. 4, Compounds of the Circle Series, . . .17

Section 2. The Joining of Vocal and Consonant Signs . 19

Section 3. Primary Long Vocals, . . . .19

Section 4. Secondary Long Vocals, ... 21

Section 5. Short Vocal Joinings, . . . .23

Section 6. Short Intermediate Vocal Joinings, . . 23, 25

Section 7. Long Intermediate Vocal Joinings, . . 25

Sections. Explanations, of the Qua and Triphthong Series, 25

Section 9. Key to Table of Word and Phrase Signs, . . 27

First Test Exercise, .... 27, 31

Second Test Exercise, ... 31

Third Test Exercise, . . . 33, 35


Section 1. Additional Word- and Phrase-Signs, . . 37

Writing Exercise 1, . . . . . 37

Section 2. A tick for final y, initial h, and shortened I, . 39

Section 3. The Use of Vowels in Words of one syllable, 39



Writing Exercise 2. Vocalized Outlines, . . .41

Writing Exercise 3. The Child and the Brook, . . 41, 43

Writing Exercise 4. Selections for Practice, . . ..43,45

Writing Exercise 5. Selections for Practice, . . 45

Section 4. Words of a Single Stem containing Signs of the

El, Ar, Qna and Circle series, . . .45

Section 5. Extended use of the Compounds of the El and Ar

series, ....... 45

Section 6. The use of Zhe for j and nj, ... 45

Section 7. The use of the Circle where the Vocal is included, 47
Writing Exercise 6, Illustrations of Sections 4, 5, 6 and 7,

and additional phrase-signs, .... 47

Writing Exercise 7. Selections for Practice, . . 49

Writing Exercise 8, " " . . .49

Section 8. Shortened Letters, .... 51

Writing Exercise 9. Shortened Letters, . . .51

Writing Exercise 10. Selections for Practice, . . 53

Section 9. Lengthened Curves, . . . . 55

Writing Exercise 11. Lengthened Curves, . . 57

Section 10. Miscellaneous Contractions, . . .59

Writing Exercise 12. Selections for Practice, . . 59

Section 11. Ste and Est Loops, . . . 61

Writing Exercise 13. The n and v-hooks, the shaded Em, El,

Ar and Ra, Ste and Est loops, . . .61, 63

Writing Exercise 14. Selections for Practice, . . 63

Writing Exercise 15. Application of Principles, . 65

Writing Exercise 16. Selections for Practice, . . 65, 67



Section 1. Extended use of the Half-Length Principle, ate,

way, ment, etc., . . . . .69

Writing Exercise 1. The Terminations ate, ward, dent,

ment, etc, . . . . . .69

Writing Exercise 2. Selections for Practice, . . 71

Writing Exercise 3. Selections for Practice, . . 73

Section 2. The Terminations zhn, shn, zhnal, shnal, . 73

Section 3. The Terminations meter, liter, ure, ural, urally,

ual, ually, ular, ularly, tude, ize, ness, less and with, . 76


Section 4. The Terminations ian, ien, iar, ier, ior, with

i coalescent, . . . . . .75

Section 5. The Termination? <d and ing, . . 75

Writing Exercise 4. Affix Si^ns, . .75

Writing Exercise 5. Selections for Practice, . 77

Writing Exercise 6. Selections for Practice, . .77

Section 6. Contracted Prefix Signs, . . 79

Writing Exercise 7. Prefixes, . . . .81

Writing Exercise 8. Selections for Practice, . 81

Writing Exercise 9. The Discovery of America. . 83

Section 7. Contracted Phrases and Word Omissions . 85

Section 8. Punctuation in Note Taking, . . .85

Writing Exercise 10. Special Phrases, . . 85, 87

Writing Exercise 11. Selections for Practice, . . 89

Writing Exercise 12. Selections for Practice. . . 89

Writing Exercise 13. Extract from a Lecture by Edward

Everett. The Temperance Reform. . 91, 93, 95


Alphabet: 1 Consonant, 2 Vocals, 3 Compounds of the El,

Ar, and Qua series, 4 Compounds of the Circle Series. 16
Joinings of Vocal and Consonant Signs, Primary Long

Vocals, Secondary Long Vocals, . . .18, 20

Short Vocal Joinings, ...... 22

Short Intermediate Vocal Joinings, . . . . 22, 34

Long Intermediate Vocal Joinings, ... 26
Consonant Joinings : A, with Angles; B, without Angles; C,

Miscellaneous, . . . . 28

Table of Word- and Phrase-Signs, . . 28

First Test Exercise, . . . . .30

Second Test Exercise, . 32

Third Test Exercise, . 33


Writing Exercise 1. Additional Word and Phrase Signs, . 36

Writing Exercise 2. Vocalized Outlines, . . 38

Writing Exercise 3. Selections for Practice, . .40

Writing Exercise 4. Selections for Practice, . . 42


Writing Exercise 5. Selections for Practice, . . 44

Writing Exercise 6. 1 and 2 Vocalized Compounds, 3 Vocals
included in Compounds, 4 Zhe used for j and nj, 5 Zhel
used for jel,and Zherfor jr. 6 Vocals included with Circle,
7 Additional Phrase Signs, . . . .46

Writing Exercise 7. Selections for Practice, . . 48

Writing Exercise 8. Selections for Practice, . . 50

Writing Exercise 9. Shortened Letters. ... 52

Writing Exercise 10. Selections for Practice, . . 54

Writing Exercise 11. Lengthened Curves, . . 56

Writing Exercise 12. Selections for Practice. . . 58

Writing Exercise 13. The n- and v-hooks, Emp, Arch, Arj,

Ler, Rel, Ste and Est, ... .HO

Writing Exercise 14. Selections for Practice, . . 62

Writing Exercise 15. Miscellaneous Outlines in application

of the General Principles of Contraction, . . .64

Writing Exercise 16. Selections for Practice, . . 66


Writing Exercise 1. The terminations of ate, ward, bent,

dent, vent, ance, ins, . . . . .68

Writing Exercise 2. Selections for Practice, . . 70

Writing Exercise 3. Selections for Practice, . .72

Writing Exercise 4. The Terminations ation, ition, asion,
ision, ection, ution tional, ration, ulation, ure, ual, ular,
ship, self, tude, ize, ization, ian, ien and with, . . 74

Writing Exercise 5. Selections for Practice, . . 76

Writing Exercise 6. The North American Indians Sprague, 78
Writing Exercise 7. Contracted Prefi xes ad, com, con, intra,
tre, tri, tro, trance, intrance, extra, tre-tri, expli, em, im
and pro, ....... 80

Writing Exercise 8. Selections for Practice, . . 82

Writing Exercise 9. Discovery of America Everett, . 84

Writing Exercise 10. Word Omissions, Intersections and

Special Phrases, . . . . .86

Writing Exercise 11. Selections for Practice, . . 88

Writing Exercise 12. Selections for Practice, . . . 90

Writing Exercise 13. The Temperance Reform Edward

Everett, ... . 92-94





The terms, system and style as applied to Shorthand, are some-
times used interchangeably. In this work a 'system" of Shorthand
"Writing is regarded as comprising all the various styles, modes or
degrees of contraction, built upon a given alphabet by a given

The word "Style" relates, not to the complete work of an author,
but to any one form or variation of it which may be adapted to
any specific purpose.

In the system of Takigrafy we recognize two classes of styles
one natural and necessary, the other subject to such modifications
as convenience may dictate in adapting it to use.


A natural style is a natural development of a system upon a
given alphabetic basis.

The first natural style which may be called the LITERAL consists
of the joinings of the alphabetic letters into word-forms without
modification, change or variation. Such a style may be of service
in teaching children, but is not in actual use.

The second natural style is built on the basis of the alphabet as
supplemented by the compounds of the Qua, El Ar and Es series.
This, with little variation, forms what is known as the Simple Style.

The third natural style is based on a further extension of the
alphabetic basis, formed by the addition of shortened and length-
ened letters, final hooks, prefix and affix signs, etc. This style
may admit of a greater or less number of fundamental stem signs.
In Phonography the stem signs number not far from 1500. In the
Contracted Style of Takigrafy the most extended alphabetic basis
is reduced to about 500 stem signs; though this number is by no
means fixed, as it can be lessened or increased, according to the
d gree of contraction required, and the object for which the style
is cultivated.


The styles in actual use are based upon the natural styles, but
admit of some variation, in the use of a greater or less number of
word- and phrase-signs.




The Simple Style, as used, has for its basis the alphabet supple-
mented by the signs of the Qua, El, Ar and Es series; and every
legitimate outgrowth of this basis belongs to it. But whether the
Word-signs it employs shall number 25, 50 or 100, is purely a
matter of convenience, and their use or disuse does not affect the
character of the style. So in regard to the use of Phrase-signs;
whether they shall be used at all, or if used, under what restric-
tions, are open questions that do not affect the validity of the style.

The style used in this work which may be termed the Intermedi-
ate, Amanuensis, or Business Style, is built on the same natural
basis as the third "Natural Style" described above; and differs
from a full Reporting style, not so much in the contractions which
form its basis, as in the manner of their use. The use of half
length letters is admitted, but their use is restricted principally
to their phonetic value, as expressing the union of the sounds
without an intervening vowel. The use of lengthened curves is
also admitted, but their use is restricted. So this style does
not differ radically from the Reporting Style, but is a rudimentary,
and less difficult form of that style; or one in which the contractions
are used in their phonetic value. This makes their application as
natural and easy as the use of the Compound Signs in the Simple
Style. The few irregular outlines can be easily mastered, and
one having a perfect knowledge of the Simple Style can master the
Business Style in a few weeks.

In the author's conception of the art, the Simple Style is neces-
sary to the Contracted. The Simple Style embodies all general
principles, while the Contracted Style deals with special principles.
The Simple Style is an essential part of the Contracted, and its
principles enter into the outlines of thousands of words even in
the briefest style. It is a great mistake to suppose that in a
Contracted style all words are contracted, or that the study of
contractions can ever be made to take the place of a study of the
general principles which form an essential part of all the Styles of
the art.


To those unacquainted with the subject, it may be necessary to
say, that two theories of teaching have grown up. One theory of
late vigorously pushed assumes that the chief difficulty in learning
the art is in gaining the habit of using certain word-forms without
hesitation, and that this is to be acquired, not through a knowledge
of principles, but through practice on them. To reduce this labor
to a minimum, it aims to teach the briefest form for each Y. ord at
its first introduction to the student. This presents the art to his
mind as a system, of word-signs, or stenographs. It is substan-
tially the old stenographic method of teaching, which has prevailed
from time immemorial. It has, of course, some points of merit; for,
to a certain extent, word-signs are necessary, and those in frequent
use may well be learned in an early part of the course.



The advantages claimed for this plan are:

1. That it is easier to teach a pupil to write a stenograph than
to tell him why it is so written; that the faculty of imitation is
more widely diffused among men, than the ability to comprehend

2. That the teacher saves time spent in experimentation by the
other method, and need not be troubled with the correction of

3. That the student in imitating a perfect copy, is saved the
trouble of blundering, as he is likely to d< it v>9 attempts to apply
a principle instead of copying a word form.


The objections to this plan of teaching are:

1. That it lays no foundation for a complete knowledge of the

2. Beginning nowhere it ends nowhere. All that the student
acquires is a stenograph for a certain number of words. Unusual
wo. ds, and the universe of proper names of persons and places, are
so many stones of stumbling, as they can be properly handled
only through a knowledge of principles.

3. It dest roys the essential principles of Takigrafy, in destroying
the Simple Style.

4. It arrests the true development of the art turning it back-
wards towards its stenographic sources.

5. It starts the student on a course of study without method,
with the certainty that if he ever acquires any reasonable knowl-
edge of principles, it will be after years of practice, and a great loss
of time and effort. What the teacher gains the pupil loses by this
plan of work.

The teacher may indeed shirk his duty, but a certain amount of
experimentation on the part of the pupil is essential to any
knowledge of principles, and the Stenographic method of teaching
does not remove but simply postpones the difficulty. This will be
seen when we consider that only a very small part of the world
of words can ever be taught in a course of instruction, and if they
could be taught they could not be retained in the memory.


The value of c knowledge of the Simple Style to amanuenses
and reporters, as well as other writers, is in the fact, that by far
the greater number of words in the language must be written in
that style. The contractions apply to a limited class of words;
while the almost endless number of words of infrequent occurence
must be written through a knowledge of the principles alone, not
through any previous knowledge of the Word Forms.

The theory of teaching which the author has followed, and which
he believes to be the only theory through which certain and speedy
results can be obtained, is to teach first those principles which


apply to all words, and to accustom the pupil to write from a
knowledge of the principles of the art, until he has a command of
the system as taught in the Simple Style. This lays a broad
foundation for future requirements, upon which he can build a
style more or less contracted according to the work which he pro-
poses to do. Upon this foundation he can erect his superstructure,
and it will stand; and having acquired what contractions, word-
and phrase-signs he needs, his knowledge is complete, harmonious
and intellegible. Should he at any time desire, he can add
other contractions; or should he find, through change of business,
that he does not need the briefer style, he falls easily back upon
the broad foundation of the Simple Style, and the art remains to
him a sure possession for life; whereas the stenographic plan of
study above described, leaves him with a style which he cannot
adapt Jto new circumstances; and his acquirements are lost; and
like other stenographers he goes back to longhand writing.

This is not mere theory. The author has taught hundreds
of pupils according to both methods. He has carefully noted
results through a series of years, and frequently pupils who have
insisted on being taught in a stenographic method have confessed in
after years that they were convinced of their error and that they
had lost time instead of gaining it; but he cannot recall one in-
stance, in which a pupil has regretted having learned thoroughly,
and practiced fully the Simple Style.

Should any student or teacher inquire how much time should be
devoted to the Simple Style, I would say: The more the better. If
the student is so situated that he can spend one or two years in
the practice of the Simple Style, it will be greatly to his advantage.
In cases where this cannot be done, where the student is anxious
to acquire the art for immediate use in amanuensis work, he should
spend at least two months on the Simple Style; even if but one
month remains for the study of contractions.


The student should first ascertain whether he is prepared to go
on with the following work: Have you mastered the principles of
the Simple Style? Have you reduced them to practice so as to
write easily, at least, seventy-five to eighty words a minute, and in
a tolerably correct manner? If you fall far short of this in speed,
or are not able to apply the principles of the style to the formation
of good outlines, you can do nothing to lead to a rapid and per-
manent success so well as to go back to the Exercise Book or the
Manual, and practice the principles of that style.

To test the students ability and to give at the same time a review
of the Simple Style three test Exercises are given accompanied by


Keys,* with the speed in which they should be written, indicated.

Should the student fail on the first trial, let him proceed to
master the word-signs of the Simple Style as given in Chapter 1,
and with this additional knowledge try his speed on these exercises
once more. If he still falls short in speed but is confident that he
is correct in his knowledge of the principles of the Simple Style,
l<-t him take up the alphabet drill and persevere in it day by day
until he can write the entire alphabet, vowels and consonants, in
ten seconds. He will also in connection with this practice take up
the consonant joinings as given on pages 19 to 25, devoting fifteen
to twenty minutes or more every day to the exercise. He should
attend especially to the joinings of the short vocals and the table
of consonant joinings given on page 28. Vocal joinings should be
written as read by some one employed to dictate them; but the
consonant joinings can be repeated, writing the same outline as
many times as possible in a minute or half a minute at a time.

It will be found that such joinings as Be-Te, Te-Be, can be writ-
ten a hundred and twenty-five to a hundred and fifty times in a
minute, and such combinations as Ish-La, Ish-En, Ma-Ith, etc.,
in which no angle occurs, two hundred times and upward in a
minute. This kind of practice should be continued for weeks de-
voting a short time each day to the excercise.

These drills may accompany the study of the Student's style,
when the student is prepared to enter upon it. His lack of speed
will in many cases be found to be owing to his previous neglect
of these and the alphabet drills, and nothing more may be neces-
sary to enable himlto reach the test proposed above.


After the student has passed the test, and has been duly admit-
ted into the study of the style given in this work, he should proceed
in the order of the exercises laid down, determined to carry each
point with him as he proceeds; for he has now reached a point in
which theory must yield to practice. Avoid the slovenly habit of
a mixed style in which the word and phrase signs of the simple
style are used with variations. This may be well enough for the
teacher whose business it is to go back continually to elementary
principles, but not for the student who wishes to gain speed. Use
the forms given in the tables always and everywhere; and when a

*In case the student has learned forms of contraction not used in the
Simple Style, this test of speed should be made in the style to which he
is accustomed. It would nor, be advisable for him to endeavor to con-
form his style to the forms given in the engraved Key in such a case.


new form is learned bring it into practice and use it. Go no

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Online LibraryDavid Philip LindsleyA short course in business shorthand .. → online text (page 1 of 6)