What Kingsley Read did with the Shaw Alphabet
Kingsley Read extensively modified the Shaw Alphabet into what he called Quickscript. He got no more support from the Shaw estate, so no more types were ever founded, and he handwrote Quickscript (which he sometimes spelled Quikscript, as on the cover of this undated pamphlet, probably published in 1966.). This page is as far as I know the first Web resource for Quickscript.
A table of the alphabet (now spelled "Quickscript") appears as a foldout in the pamphlet. At least half of the letter forms of the Shaw Alphabet have been entirely redesigned. Quickscript received much less publicity than the Shaw Alphabet, and is much less well known. The only fluent writer of Quickscript I know of is Roger Collin, a New Zealander who learned Quickscript from an extraordinary Australian source, Cole's Funny Picture Book No.2 71st (Surprise) Edition 1979, ISBN 099900 03 5.
Read has written out this familiar verse in a "print" form of the alphabet which he calls "Junior Quickscript". He also offers several examples of his "Senior Quickscript", with a number of contractions, affixes, and joins.
Read did not rest from his labors. He went on to abandon the Shaw alphabet forms entirely for an extensively modified Roman alphabet called (get it?) Readspel. His daughter Mavis Mottram lettered this table of Shaw Alphabet, Quickscript, and Readspel forms for Patricia Smart's The Kingsley Read Alphabet Collection: a catalogue (The library of the University of Reading, U.K., 1983, still in print 1999)
E-mail Bob Richmond
April 3rd, 1999
Return to Shaw Alphabet page .