The Law Dictionary

Your Free Online Legal Dictionary • Featuring Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Ed.

What is COURT-HAND

In old English practice. The peculiar hand in which the records of courts were written from the earliest period down to the reign of George II. Its characteristics were great strength, compactness, and undeviating uniformity; and its use undoubtedly gave to the ancient record its acknowledged superiority over the modern, in the important quality of durability. The writing of this hand, with its peculiar abbreviations and contractions, constituted, while it was in use, an art of no little importance, being au Indispensable part of the profession of “clerkship.” as it was called. Two sizes of it were employed, a large and a small hand; the former, called “great court- hand.” being used for initial words or clauses, the placita of records, etc. Burrill.

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