Page:Theory and Practice of Handwriting.djvu/31

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of the numerous experts engaged in the investigation is that the Slant or Slope of our writing is the undoubted cause of the abnormal and injurious postures so grievously complained of. As will appear in the Sequel there is no room for doubt, question or challenge. Teachers, Oculists and Surgeons combine in one united body and give an unqualified verdict. For thirty years we have had abundant opportunity for observation and experiment and we give an emphatic, unreserved confirmation to the testimony just alluded to. No matter what pattern desks and seats are in use, what the light may be and what the nature and thoroughness of the instruction; whenever children are required to write in the sloping style their postures will present every variety of abnormity and distortion.

The concurrent evidence of a body of medical experts and specialists supported by the experience of thousands of teachers goes to show that in sloping writing the side position of the body is inevitable; that twisting of the head or neck, and distortion of the spine must accompany this side position; that displacement of the right shoulder, deflection of the wrist, a disturbance of the common action of the two eyes with a consequent delusive and oblique view of the book, and an unhealthy compression of the chest walls involving pneumonic and gastric disturbances, are the inseparable accompaniments of the postures required in and necessary to oblique writing.

The directions generally prescribed to a writing class where sloping penmanship is taught run as follow:–

1. Left sides to the desk.
2. Left arms close in to side.
3. Left hands on Copy Books.
4. Right elbows in to side.
5. Pens pointing to right ear (or chin).
6. Faces turned towards Books.
7. Grasp pens firmly and Go on!!!

What can be expected from a system of writing that inflicts such conditions as these? As to the writing an answer is supplied in Chapter I,–it is a miserable failure; and with reference