i. Phonography Defined. - Phonography is a method of shorthand writing in which each sound of the language is written with a sign of its own.

2.   Number of Sounds. - There are forty distinct sounds in the English language, twenty-four of which are consonants and sixteen are vowels.

3.   Explanatory.- Each of the following words has but two sounds, the first being a consonant-sound and the last a vowel-sound : pa, bay, tea, daw, Joe, coo, fie, boy, thou, new. The fact that most of these words are written with three letters, and one with four, does not indicate that there are more than two sounds in any of them.

4.  The Consonant-Signs. - The consonants are written with simple straight and curved signs, struck in various directions, some of which are made light and others heavy. These signs are called "consonant-stems," or, briefly, " stems."

5.  Origin of the Stems. - The source from which the phonographic signs for the twenty-four consonant-sounds are derived is the circle, with diametrical lines drawn as shown in the following cuts: e ®

The first cut gives us two straight stems, a perpendicular and a horizontal, and four slanting curves ; and the second gives us two slanting straight stems and four curves, two of which are perpendicular


4Phonography Lesson I 5

The first cut gives us two straight stems, a perpendicular and a horizontal, and four slanting curves ; and the second gives us two slanting straight stems and four curves, two of which are perpendicular

I and two horizontal - the two diagrams thus furnishing twelve distinct signs. Then, by making each of the stems shaded as well as light, we get twelve additional signs - making twenty-four simple consonant-signs in all.

6. Every consonant-stem, whether straight or curved, is written in the direction of some one of the lines of the following diagram :


7. Direction of Stems. - The horizontal stems are written from left to right. They are the following signs :


8. The stems Lee and Ree are written from left to right and upward ; thus,—


9. All the other stems are written from the top downward. They are the following signs,—


10. The Vowel-Signs. - The simple-vowels, twelve in number, are written with dots and short dashes, also made both light and heavy, which are written at the sides of the consonant-stems in different places lengthwise of the stems. The diphthongs, four in number, are written with little angles, likewise placed at the sides of the consonant-stems. A vowel-sign may be written on either side of a stem.

II. The Vowel-Places. - There are three places at the sides of consonant-stems in which vowel-signs are written, namely, at the beginning, at the middle, and at the finish. Thus, when placed to a Tee, we have


12. Names of the Vowel-Places. - The vowel-places are called respectively, " First-place," "Second-place," and " Third-place." The numbers of the vowel-places - one, two, three - are counted from the beginning of a stem as it is written, no matter in what direction it may be struck. Thus, with a downstroke they run from the upper end downward; with a horizontal, from left to right, and with an upstroke, from the lower end upward. The three vowel-places are shown below by dots and dashes placed to broken lines which represent a downstroke and an upstroke stem :


13. Diagrams of Vowel-Places. - The three vowel-places, both before and after stems, may be learned from the following diagrams, in which the figures, 1, 2, 3, are placed to the stems Tee (downward), Kay (horizontal), Ree (upward), Chay (downward), Ef (downward), Em (horizontal), Lee (upward), and Ish (downward).


14.   Long and Short Vowels. - Six of the simple-vowels are long, and six are short. The Heavy vowel* signs represent Long vowel-sounds, and the Light vowel-signs represent Short vowel-sounds. The long-vowels are heard in the words bah, bay, be ; bought, boat, boot; and the short-vowels are heard in the words bat, bet, bit; bock, buck, book.

15.   Writing by Sound. - All words are written entirely by sound, - that is, just as they are pronounced. By this is meant that each sound, whether consonant or vowel, is written with its own phonographic sign. No attention whatever is paid to the ordinary spelling of words ; and only as many signs are used to write a word as it has sounds. Thus, each of the words pay, ought, though, know, bough, isle, has but two sounds, therefore each is written in phonography with but two signs. Silent letters are never written, the k in know and the h in hour and heir being omitted. Know is written like no and heir like air.

16.   For the purposes of this lesson it will be necessary to learn the first sixteen consonant-signs of the Phonographic Alphabet, at page xii., that is from Pee to Zhee inclusive, being the following characters -


17. How to Learn the Consonants. - A good way to learn the consonant-signs is to take a rule (or card) in the right hand and with it cover the three columns entitled "Power," "Name," "Type," under the heading "CONSONANTS" in the Alphabet (page xvi.), leaving exposed the column of " Signs " at the left. Then, while look-ing at each of those signs successively, pronounce its name as printed in the third column, - Pee, Bee, Tee, etc., to Zhee. If at any time you are not sure about the name of a sign, the rule may be lowered so as to show that name, but none of those below it. Pursue this course until you can, without hesitation, give the names of the first sixteen signs. Then take the rule in the left hand and cover only the column of signs, and while looking at the name and studying the power of each sign, make the sign with a pencil. Continue doing this until without seeing it you can instantly make each sign upon looking at its name or knowing its power.

18.    Second-Place Long-Vowels. - The vowel-sound heard in each of the words ape, ate, day, lace, aid, gate, pain, they, eight, neigh is written with a heavy dot placed near the middle of the stem. The vowel-sound heard in each of the words ore, joke, loaf, more, door, beau, dough is written with a short, heavy dash placed near the middle of the stem. These two sounds are called long-vowels.