Bye-bye Cursive?

It looks like the beginning of the end for "a good hand," a quaint expression meaning that someone writes clearly, legibly, and sometimes even with a flourish. It was called "longhand," or, to use the two-dollar term, "cursive."

you see, some elementary school teachers see the handwriting on the wall when it comes to the fluid style of writing--communicating, if you will--and they say the accomplishment should not be allowed to wither in the face of the computerized word processor onslaught.

Back in the days when latin was the language of scholarship, as well as the standard way for people of learning who spoke different languages to write to each other, it was in standard block letters. In fact, there was little if any punctuation, and spaces between words were not common. That way, more words could be crammed onto a page of expensive paper. Think of monks in an unheated carrel laboriously copying scripture by hand. It was not easy to read.

Cursive writing, in which the letters are connected anyway, sped up things considerably, and encouraged the luxury of spacing between words. It was a lot easier to read, in addition to being much faster. It was sometimes florid and sweeping, sometimes beautiful. Its pinnacle is practiced now by people who do calligraphy. It was a good thing. If it disappears through lack of use, we will have lost an art form. We'll be right back.