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Andrew Owen

     1.  Only sounds are represented in Gregg Shorthand—all silent letters are omitted.  Thus, one does not write Thron but tron; not hohl but hol; not Carl but karl; not Rock but rok; not Fall but fal (short A); not Ruhm but rum; and so on. Double consonants are not written except where the belong to different syllables and are therefore sounded separately.  One L is written in Fallen and one P in Lippe, but two R's are represented in verrechnen.

     2.  It is not necessary to show the majority of the inflexions of adjectives, verbs, etc.  The following rules should be carefully noted:
     (a) Adjectives having a final E in their simple form lose this letter.  All adjectives remain uninflected, retaining their predicative form.

Im schön Garten,
     not Im schönen Garten
     not leise
Ein lei Geräusch,
     not Ein leises Geräusch

     (b) Singular nouns ending in E lose this letter.  Nouns in the singular are inflected only for the genitive.  Plural nouns are written in full, but the (additional) dative N is omitted.

Der frei Gedank.
Den frei Gedank.
Des frei Gedanks.
Dem frei Gedank.
Schön Blumen.
In den Felder.

     (c) In verbs a final E is omitted except when it occurs in the third person of the imperfect indicative or subjunctive.

Ich geh.  Ich konnt.  Er kaufte (in full).  Er hörte (in full).

     (d) The ending EN or N is always omitted.

     3.  The consonants are nearly all arranged in pairs, according to their affinity of sound, and are distinguished by a difference in length.

Forward Consonants

     (a) The curves are formed from an elliptical figure:The elliptical figure; a horizontal oval with a line through  it.

     (b) These strokes are written forward; the T and D upward from the line of writing.

     (c) The G is always the G in words such as gehen, never the G in foreign words such as Genie (The character for this G will be given later).  G at the end of words and syllables is sometimes pronounced CH, as in bröckelig, but the stroke as given at the head of this paragraph is always used.

     (d) Similarly, D at the end of words is sometimes pronounced T, but D is written notwithstanding.  Tod is an example.

     (e) The H dot is placed just above the vowel which immediately follows.

     4.  The vowels are represented by the circle (in two sizes, large and small) and by hooks.  They are written into the shorthand form at the point where they occur in the spoken word.

5.  A Vowel Markings

Kamm, kam, and käme

     (a) The large circle represents the vowel sound (the A) in Kamm; with a light dot underneath, it represents the vowel A in kam, the AH in Mahl, or the AA in Aal; with a short dash, it represents the Ä in käme, the EE in leer, the EH in kehren, or the E in dem.

     (b) The dots and dashes are seldom used; they become necessary occasionally in isolated or unfamiliar words.

6.  E Vowel Markings

E vowel markings

     The small circle has four values:  Standing alone it represents the I in nimm; with a light dot, the E in denn or the Ä in fällig; with a short dash, the IE in Kiel; with a short light horizontal line struck over it, it represents the Ü in Rügen and Müller.

     The following are the rules to be observed for the writing of the circles:

(a)Ecke, Egge, Aal, Takt, Ratte, Schale, Gicht

     Inside curves standing alone or joined to straight strokes without forming an angle.

(b) Fieber, lag, Galle

     Between two reverse curves the circle is turned on the back of the first curve.

(c)Meine, ihn, hat, Thee, Dattel

     When joined to straight strokes (and when coming between two straight strokes in the same line) the circle is written in the direction of movement of the hands of the clock.

(d)Mühle, Kahn, dann, Liebe

     When two characters join with an angle, the circle is written outside the angle.

8. Word-Signs

Er, ich, können, kann, geh, gehen, gut,  nicht, in, mehr, im, der, das, wollen, will, Name, nach, Agent, dich, die, mich, kommen

     A large proportion of all written and spoken language is made up of a comparatively few words. The above forms, which are termed "word-signs," should be committed thoroughly to memory.

9. Phrasing

in der, ich-kann-night, er-will, Hat-nicht

     Simple words when they form natural grammatical phrases should be joined, but awkward joinings must be carefully avoided.  The above are a few examples.

     10.  Punctuation should be given proper attention.  The period is expressed by  period, the end of a paragraph by paragraph, >, the dash by Dash, ===, the hyphen by hyphen, = (struck upwards), and the mark of interrogation by question mark, ×.
     Parentheses are expressed by the ordinary marks with short dashes struck through them: parentheses; normal parentheses with a line or two drawn through them
     Other punctuation marks are written in the usual way.

- Next Page -

About Gregg Shorthand
Editor's Note
A Talk with the Beginner
The Alphabet
Chapter I
   Unit 1
   Unit 2
   Unit 3
Chapter II
   Unit 4
   Unit 5
   Unit 6
Chapter III
   Unit 7
   Unit 8
   Unit 9
Chapter IV
   Unit 10
   Unit 11
   Unit 12
Chapter V
   Unit 13
   Unit 14
   Unit 15
Chapter VI
   Unit 16
   Unit 17
   Unit 18
Chapter VII
   Unit 19
   Unit 20
   Unit 21
Chapter VIII
   Unit 22
   Unit 23
   Unit 24
Chapter IX
   Unit 25
   Unit 26
   Unit 27
Chapter X
   Unit 28
   Unit 29
   Unit 30
Chapter XI
   Unit 31
   Unit 32
   Unit 33
Chapter XII
   Unit 34
   Unit 35
   Unit 36


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