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Calendar Quotes


These brief quotes are set out in the Shorthand Perpetual Calendar PDF (on Downloads page). The Calendar is A4 page per month, with space for your entries. It also contains a page each of Diary and Weather vocabulary to encourage daily shorthand writing, and explanatory notes on some of the outlines used.

1, 4, 6, 8, 11 Isaac Pitman, Manual of Phonography
2, 5 Selby Moran, 100 Valuable Suggestions to Shorthand Students
3, 9 David Wolfe Brown, The Science & Art of Phrase-Making
7 Willard Bottome, The Stenographic Expert
10, 12 Edward McNamara, Methods of Teaching Shorthand

You can read these books online or download PDF free from Internet Archive www.archive.org


A system of writing is required that shall bring the operations of the mind and of the hand into close correspondence; that shall relieve the penman from the drudgery inseparable from the use of the present system, by making writing as easy and as rapid as speech.
(47 words) Isaac Pitman, Manual of Phonography


In many branches of knowledge a person may neglect many details and not encounter any serious trouble in the further progress of the study, but in shorthand it is very different. Here, is allowed no time for reflection. No chance is given to recall things only vaguely learned. (48 words) Selby Moran, 100 Valuable Suggestions to Shorthand Students

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A good phonographic phrase simply groups upon paper, words already grouped by the mind and tongue. David Wolfe Brown. A good phonographic phrase is easy to write and pleasant to read. It brings the words harmoniously together like the members of a happy family; and to see them in such loving juxtaposition gives one a certain sense of satisfaction and pleasure. Thomas Allen Reed
(64 words) David Wolfe Brown, The Science & Art of Phrase-Making


Phonography supplies the want we have shown to exist, by presenting a system of alphabetic writing capable of being written with the speed of the most rapid distinct articulation and of being read with the certainty and ease of ordinary longhand. (41 words) Isaac Pitman, Manual of Phonography

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Anything thoroughly understood as a complete whole is never entirely forgotten. But that stage in which it becomes firmly fixed in mind can be reached only by constant and persistent practice, no day being allowed to pass without having made some advancement. By so doing there is no danger of one's interest flagging and of his giving up what would otherwise prove so interesting and profitable. (66 words) Selby Moran, 100 Valuable Suggestions to Shorthand Students


When his hand has become accustomed to trace the simple geometrical forms of the phonographic characters with correctness and elegance, he will find little or no difficulty in writing them quickly; but if the student lets his anxiety to write fast overcome his resolution to write well, he will not only delay his attainment of real swiftness, but will always have to lament the illegibility of his writing. (68 words) Isaac Pitman, Manual of Phonography

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The mind must be trained to think, believe, demand success. Whoever heard of an individual accomplishing anything he undertook while constantly harping of failure? It is fatal to entertain such discouraging thoughts for a moment, for you must compel success by determined optimism. (43 words) Willard Bottome, The Stenographic Expert


The rapidity with which it enables a person to commit his own thoughts to the safety of manuscript also renders it an object peculiarly worthy of regard. By this means many ideas which daily strike us, and which are lost before we can record them in the usual way, may be snatched from destruction, and preserved till mature deliberation can ripen and perfect them. (64 words) Isaac Pitman, Manual of Phonography, quoting Mr Gawtress

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After taking down any given matter on the first trial*, I proceeded to transcribe or read what I had written, circling each outline or phrase which I had formed badly or which looked shaky. These outlines and phrases I carefully noted in a small book I carried about with me for that purpose; and when an opportunity presented itself, I wrote and rewrote them until I acquired the greatest possible facility in forming them. (74 words)
David Wolfe Brown, The Science & Art of Phrase-Making, quoting George Bunbury, Victorian 250 words a minute writer

* trial = test, practising for the 250 wpm certificate


Another cause of hesitation and indecision in writing is that of a too limited vocabulary. If the word were known, the ear would catch it easily, and a reference to the context* would determine by its appropriateness whether that was the word heard or not. The student who possesses a good knowledge of English is favoured with one of the biggest advantages in the stenographic race. The number of stenographic word-friends should always be on the increase until he must go afield to meet a word-stranger. (86 words) Edward McNamara, Methods of Teaching Shorthand

* "context" should always have the Con Dot, and not proximity, as that would be too similar to "text"

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For any given word, the writer should choose that form which is most easily and rapidly written, and is at the same time distinct. The briefest outline to the eye is not necessarily the most expeditious to the hand. The student will insensibly* acquire a knowledge of the best forms by practice and observation. (54 words) Isaac Pitman, Manual of Phonography

* "insensibly" here is an older use of the word, meaning "imperceptibly, unconsciously"


No plan of developing speed in shorthand is complete unless it utilises the power to be obtained from the reading of shorthand notes. In reading his own notes the student brings his stenographic work to successful fruition, for it will avail him nothing to have the maximum speed of which a human being is capable if he is unable to decipher what has been written. Correct transcription of the notes is the final act of the speed writer that gives the work value. (83 words) Edward McNamara, Methods of Teaching Shorthand

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"Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable if anything is excellent or praiseworthy think about such things." (Philippians 4:8)

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