Bear in mind that Beauchesne and Baildon were writing masters, with two consequences: (i) some of the forms which they give will be more usual than other forms which they illustrate; and (ii) some very cursive forms will not appear in their alphabet. This page attempts to rectify that problem by illustrating the more usual forms where they provide several forms and by providing examples of very cursive forms which do not even appear in their alphabet.

An alphabet derived from a declaration of 1659 - not all characters were represented in the deed.

[A] [B] [C] [D] [E] [F] [G] [H]
[I] [J] [K] [L] [M] [N] [O] [P]
[Q] [R] [S] [T] [U] [V] [W] [X] [Y] [Z]


a note the angular stroke which closes the a at the top of the bole


b note the looping of the ascender of lower case b


c lower case c is difficult - it is simply a minim with a short horizontal stroke near the top, but note also the initial upstroke

C upper case C is like a nought with a cross in the middle

d a lower case d with an oblique ascender - here the end of [Rich]ard

d a lower case d with a looped ascender

d a lower case d with a narrow looped ascender which loops back over the word and


e this is the reverse e which developed in the mid 14th century and persists into mixed/round hands

e the two-part e is constructed of two strokes

E upper case E is difficult! - here followed by a long s



F upper case F is two lower case fs: ff at different angles with a ligature

g note the direction and size of the tail of lower case g

g note the form and size of the tail of lower case g


h note that lower case h has a 'tail' which descends below the line of writing; it can be very much more cursive [here ch]

h the more cursive h - here ht


I/J upper case I and J are the same character

k difficult!

l here -ll- and note the looped ascenders

L upper case L has a large footprint with a long horizontal stroke

m three vertical strokes [minims]

M there are other forms of upper case M, but note the angled initial stroke

n two vertical strokes [minims] similar to u

N here No


p here well formed



r this r is similar to lower case c, but note that it has two vertical strokes

r 'arabic' 2-r

R upper case R is difficult!

s this is the form of s when it is final in a word

s long s - here se


st ligature st

st ligature sh

T upper case T is basically two curved strokes


v note the thin initial, angled upstroke of v

w note again the thin initial angled stroke of w

W again note the thin initial angled stroke

x - here xpi - sometimes similar to p, but differentiated by the tail

y - here by - note the direction of the tail