Penmanship oris not being taught in most schools today. As a result, when the students do have to sign their names to documents (like the SAT or ACT), they scribble, they scrawl, or they scratch. Their longhand is illegible, a quality they may not know that they share with famed poet William Shakespeare.
Just how bad was Shakespeare’s signature? There are only six surviving signatures of Shakespeare that have been authenticated, all of them on legal documents: a deposition, a house purchase, mortgage, and his Last Will and Testament (3 times).
What is interesting about these signatures is that each one is spelled differently:
- Willm Shakp
- William Shakspēr
- Wm Shakspē
- William Shakspere
- Willm Shakspere
- By me William Shakspeare
Bad handwriting? Bad spelling? Looks like Shakespeare has more in common with today’s high school student than simply being the topic of an assigned essay.