Class Characteristics of Handwriting

Writing is a conscious act. Although the actual production of each letter and word becomes practically automatic through frequent use and exposure, a skilled writer focuses most of his or her conscious attention on the subject matter rather than on the writing process itself. Because of this regular patterning and subconscious patterns, writing becomes as much a part of an individual’s personality and mannerisms than anything else.

For many years, handwriting analysis is the most important aspect of questioned document laboratory casework. It is Subjective. Each person writes differently, even within the same writer, handwriting differs, and it is the expert’s subjective opinion based on his knowledge that two writings were or were not created by the same individual.

Because writing necessitates a complicated set of abilities and is influenced by a variety of conditions, it is a core concept of forensic document examination that no two people write in the same way. A distinctive signature or extended text is never written in the same way twice.

The qualities of a class can range from those seen in huge groups of writers to those found considerably less frequently. All deviations from traditional Copybook form, such as slant variations, loops, terminal strokes, and so on, are considered individualities. All people’s writing will have both class characteristics and individual characteristics.

Handwriting can be divided into two Categories:

✍ Class Characteristics, and,

✍ Individual characteristics

The common pattern of handwriting, letter shape, and other features that are limited to a group, age, language, and so on are referred to as class characteristics.

Among the features to be considered are elements of the writing such as abbreviation; alignment; arrangement, formatting, and positioning; capitalization; connectedness and disconnectedness; cross strokes and dots, diacritics and punctuation; direction of strokes; disguise; embellishments; formation; freedom of execution; handedness; legibility; line quality; method of production; pen hold and pen position; overall pressure and patterns of pressure emphasis; proportion; simplification; size; skill; slant or slope; spacing; speed; initial, connecting, and terminal strokes; system; tremor; type of writing; and range of variation.
Other features such as lifts, stops and hesitations of the writing instrument; patching and retouching; slow, drawn quality of the line; unnatural tremor; and guide lines of various forms should be evaluated when present.

Class Characteristics of Handwriting

Movement in Handwriting:

Finger MovementThe thumb, the first, the second and slightly the third finger are in actual motion.

Writing by Finger movement is slow and the size of letters are small. Rhythm is usually absent. Handwriting by Finger movement generally used by School children or Illiterate peoples.

Hand Movement Produced by the movement or action of the whole hand with the wrist as the center of attraction.

In Writing with the hand movement the wrist act as an axis. As a result, writing is slow and laborious. Pictorial effect is usually poor.

Forearm Movement The movement of the shoulder, hand and arm with the support of the table.

Writers who write with speed often use their forearms to write. The writing is smooth and symmetrical.

Whole-Arm Movement Action of the entire arm without resting.

Writing with whole arm movement is typically large and occasionally clumsy. The writing on a wall and a black board is done with a full arm movement.

Pen Position:

it’s the pen’s angle in relation to the writing surface or the writing line. Angle of pen can be vary from 15 degree to 90 degree. A 45 degree angle is ideal for Writing.

Line Quality:

Line Quality is the smoothness, evenness, consistency, and directness of strokes. Among the most crucial aspects of a handwriting evaluation is the line quality. Line quality should be smooth, even, free of tremors, and written quickly. Forgery or deliberate modification in writing may be the cause of poor line quality.

Pictorial Effect:

The ability to create a visual effect in writing is a sign of the writer’s expertise. Handwriting can be sloppy, artistic, strong, hesitating, laboured, or nervous. Poor handwriting reveals a lack of experience in the writing field. There are many examples of this among the illiterate and semi-illiterate. Handwriting that is artistic is indicative of a creative mind. Those who write with abandon produce powerful writing. Patients, the elderly and the infirm write slowly and laboriously. It’s a regular occurrence in simulated or traceable forgeries.

Style:

It can be modified according to personal preferences and the adoption of forms that appeal to the individual. The style might be rounded, angular, or a combination of the two styles. It can be either artistic or plain.

Rhythm:

Only educated people’s handwriting has rhythm. The flow of the writing, the precise spelling and punctuation, and the proportionate construction of letters and figures are all indicators of rhythm in writing. It’s the result of years of writing and reading experience, and it’s impossible to copy.

Tremors:

People who are old, unwell, inebriated, or illiterate tend to write with tremors. Each of these tremors has its own pattern. The forger is likely to place simulated tremors in incorrect locations, and the shape and size of tremulous curves differ. It is possible to prove that writing is deceptive.

Individual Characteristics of Handwriting

Sources & References:

1. Tarannum, A. 2018. Traced forgery- A case study. Academic Journal of Forensic Science, 1(1): 1-4.

2. Dubey, S. K. and Shukla, A. K. 2016. A Grid Based Offline Signature Verification System. International Journal of Scientific Research and Development, 4(1): 1584-1588.

3. Desai B. and Kalyan J. 2013. Forensic Examination of Handwriting and Signatures. International Journal of Innovative Research & Development, 2(5): 514-526.

4. Sallawad, S. S., Sahu, M. and Ahirwar, B. 2017. Examination of Simulated Forgery and its Investigation Protocol. Research J. Pharm. and Tech, 10(12): 4211-4214.

5. Harrison, D., Burkes, T. M. and Seiger, D. P. 2009. Handwriting Examination: Meeting the Challenges of Science and the Law. Forensic Science Communications, 11(4): 1-13.

6. Choudhary, S. K. and Mathur, S. 2018. Significance of Forensic Stylistics in Fixing Authorship of Handwriting. J. Forensic Sci. & Criminal Invest, 7(4): 555718. DOI: 10.19080/JFSCI.2018.07.555718

7. Sahu, M., Yadav, A. and Rao, I. A. 2017. Examination of Handwriting for Gender Identifying Features. International Journal of Current Research, 9(1): 45923-45928.

8. Bozza, S., Taroni, F., Marquis, R. and Schmittbuhl, M. 2008. Probabilistic Evaluation of Handwriting Evidence: Likelihood Ratio for Authorship. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, 57(3): 329 – 341.

9. Huber, A. R. and Headrick, M. A. 1999. Handwriting Identification: Facts and Fundamentals. CRC Press, Boca Raton New York.

10. Sahu, M. and Shukla, I. 2017. Study of Variation in Repetitive Signature of Same Writer. International Journal of Current Research and Review, 9(5): 9-11.

11. Mathur, S., Chaudhary, S. K. 2014. Examination of Handwritten Documents of Unfamiliar Scripts: A Forensic View point on Various Indian Languages. International Journal of Research in Applied, Natural and Social Sciences, 2(4): 137-144.

12. Matuszewski, S. 2004. Natural Variation in Selected Constructional Features of Female Signatures. Problems of Forensic Sciences, LVII: 24-43.

13. Kumar, S. Saran, V., Vaid, A. B. and Gupta, A. K. 2013. Handwriting and Gender: A Statistical Study. Problems of Forensic Sciences, 95: 620- 626.

14. Patil, P. and Patil, A. 2013. Offline Signature Recognition Using Global Features. International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering, 3(1): 408-411.

15. Osborn, A. S. 1929. Questioned Document. Albany, N.Y.: Boyd Print. Co., 2nd edition.

16. Sharma, B.R. 1990. Forensic science in criminal investigation and trials.