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Spencerian Penmanship (Theory Book plus five copybooks) Package Edition

106 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0880620963
ISBN-10: 088062096X
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Spencerian Penmanship (Theory Book plus five copybooks) + Mastering Copperplate Calligraphy: A Step-by-Step Manual (Lettering, Calligraphy, Typography) + Speedball Oblique Pen Set
Price for all three: $41.34

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Product Details

  • Series: Spencerian Penmanship
  • Paperback: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Mott Media; Package edition (February 1, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 088062096X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0880620963
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,032 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

211 of 216 people found the following review helpful By Karen Traviss on November 17, 2006
Format: Paperback
A wonderful set of books if you're serious about penmanship, or wanting to see what those super-flex nibs in your collection can really do. It's been a very, very long time indeed since I sat down with a ruled exercise book and copied letters in an uncertain hand, so this was a slightly surreal (and highly therapeutic) experience all round. You need to set aside some time in a quiet room to work through the exercises and read the theory thoroughly, but it's worth it. It's also a fascinating glimpse into long-vanished teaching methods. Recommended for anyone interested in calligraphy or acquiring the principles of a more elegant hand. Best approached with a very flexible nib and plenty of patience.
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122 of 126 people found the following review helpful By Kristi D. Kerr on March 28, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This set it not meant to be used as a penmanship course for students anymore, but... that's what I did. After looking through the available resources for my children, I didn't find anything that suited us. I have horrible handwriting, my husband's isn't much better, so legible, attractive penmanship was a high priority for us. I bought one set for each of my older children (now 8 and 9), and, when they showed me the appropriate dedication to their penmanship by consistently giving me neat print writing, we moved onto the first copybook.

It's taken about a year and a half to two years, but my oldest is now in copybook 5, and has the loveliest handwriting of any 9 year old I've ever seen. She'll be moving on to longer passages of copywork when she finishes the book, and she's more than prepared. She does all of her schoolwork in Spencerian. We did have to adjust some of the letters (for example, I believe the "p" doesn't connect at the bottom... that would've made it difficult for a modern reader to read, so we had her connect it), but, overall, they use the letters as written, and it works well.

With my son, who is 8, it's taking a bit longer, but he is also very proud of his penmanship, and rather determined to improve it, so I don't worry about how long it's taking him.

We do homeschool, however, and have plenty of time to spend on penmanship at this stage. I plan on using Spencerian for the cursive penmanship course for the rest of my children.
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221 of 241 people found the following review helpful By E. Armistead on September 15, 2008
Format: Paperback
I rub my greedy little teacher's hands together as I look at the booklets before me. Now I want a classroom set; now I want every student to have one. Yes, they are 10th graders, but it is never too late to have copperplate handwriting. They would scream in horror - no text-messaging this!!!

Oh, they are lovely little books. I'm going to learn from them, convince my principal that the expense is necessary, buy thirty sets, and inflict this new (yet classically antique and elegant) skill on my students!!!
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Format: Paperback
These books are a (relatively) quick and practical guide to skills from a time gone by -- this is a part of its charm. If you want to purchase this, I say go for it, but try to keep in mind what you are signing up for:

The Spencerian method depends on a decent-sized writing desk or table with ample room to "sit properly" as the theory book will explain in detail. It will be difficult to use Spencerian script in casual setting if you are holding a notepad in one hand and the pen in another. (You would have to master "whole-arm movement" first, and even then it gets tricky.)

Good penmanship will only come if you commit to holding and wielding the pen in a way that is very counterintuitive for people of this day and age, and it will take a lot of effort and a little discomfort to do it correctly while still being able to relax the muscles you are using and not get cramped up. If you are serious about adopting this method, bite the bullet. It's very doable with practice. But you have to be willing to keep yourself from lazily resting your hand on the page at all, and only letting your ring finger and little finger skim the surface of the page. If you only want to copy what the letters look like without using the right muscular movements, then this style will be a lot more difficult, tiring and forced than it needs to be. In short, it won't be the real deal, and you will probably get discouraged over time. There are plenty of free examples of Spencerian letters for those who aren't interested in learning the right technique.

The paper in these bindings is truly subpar for the kinds of pens and inks they were originally intended for, but don't let that discourage you unless you are genuinely purist and don't have the time to make your own practice sheets.
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54 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Ken Roberts VINE VOICE on July 15, 2008
Format: Paperback
As a Civil War re-enactor / living historian, this collection of writing books featuring the Spencerian system of penmanship is a valuable body of original books/pamphlets that was originally printed in 1874. Spencerian writing, however, was in practice more than twenty years before and is perfect for one who takes living history and re-enacting seriously. Spencerian penmanship was THE style of the 19th century and chances are, if you have had the opportunity to see original (or copies of original) letters and documents of the time, this is the style of penmanship in which it was probably written.
As "postmaster" of the 21st Michigan Civil War Re-enactors Unit and the Michigan Soldiers Aid Society (MSAS - also Civil War era), I ask that our membership write letters to one another on period replica stationary. Unfortunately, the fact that we are 21st century people living our modern everyday lives reflects in the style in which we write. Now that I have these wonderful guides, I hope my fellow members in both units will take the time to learn to write in an authentic style. The winter months will give us time for practice.
I plan to make photo copies of the pages as to not ruin my originals, and I would suggest to the learner that they do the same.
A very fine collection of guide books to help us learn a lost art.
Excellent!
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Spencerian Penmanship (Theory Book plus five copybooks)
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