The Coca-Cola logo uses a form of Spencerian Script. The Ford logo also used it in its first oval logo design. In more recent years the script is basically the same but has become a little fatter with more rounded ends on some letters.
Eventually the typewriter replaced handwriting for business and a more simplified style of penmanship was adopted by schools. But it lives on in famous logos and its influence is seen in some lovely script handwriting fonts. So even if you don't use pen and ink you can type like an early graduate of Bryant & Stratton College (alma mater of Henry Ford, in fact) or a public school student of the 1890s.
Today's digital fonts that are classified as Spencerian Scripts can vary widely in style. Typically these fonts sport small x-heights and often long or distinctive descenders and ascenders. Variations in thick and thin strokes mimic the type of writing instruments of the day. Some classic script fonts have less elaborate capital letters than the forms taught in traditional handwriting workbooks.
Free Spencerian Script FontsAvailable from this site, these free fonts are in TrueType format. They generally have limited character sets, mostly A-Z in upper and lowercase and some punctuation, perhaps a few accented or special characters.
- Exmouth is a very neat and pretty script in the Spencerian tradition by Prima Fonts.
- CommScript is a classic script by Manfred Albracht with thick and thin strokes.
- Mr. Fisk-Coke by Mike Larsen is a bit like a messy version of the Coca-Cola style and only the uppercase letters really have any Spencerian look and feel. It uses the lower case c to create the alternate uppercase C and has limited punctuation.
Commercial Spencerian Script FontsWith some of these commercial fonts you'll get more alternate characters, flourishes, and ligatures.
- Spencerian Palmer Penmanship Regular by Intellecta Design is an OpenType font with very elaborate capitals.
- Spencerian By Product Regular, also from Intellecta Design, is still fancy but slightly less so than Spencerian Palmer Penmanship and there is less variation in stroke width, more uniform.
- Alexandra Script Normal by BA Graphics is very similar to the free Exmouth but with slightly fancier capitals.
- Palace Script is a typical, simplified Spencerian-flavored typeface.
- Kuenstler Script is almost a twin of Palace Script but with a bit more character spacing.
Edwardian Script has slightly fancier capitals but is a typical, classic Spencerian style script.
A few of the countless script or cursive fonts that haven't strayed too far afield of their Spencerian heritage include Balmoral, Citadel Script, Elegy, English 111, English Script, Flemish Script, Gravura, Original Script, Parfumerie Script, Sacker's Script, Shelley Script, Snell Roundhand, Tangier, Virtuosa Classic, and Young Baroque.
See some examples of actual Spencerian as it was taught and used in real life in the Spencerian Script lessons from IAMPETH (The International Association of Master Penmen-Engrossers-Teachers of Handwriting). Scroll down to the sample links under the Table of Contents.
By the time those of you reading this were in school, very different cursive handwriting styles were in vogue. Spencerian Script gave way to simpler letterforms and more print or manuscript styles. For your children and grandchildren (and perhaps some of you too), cursive handwriting may no longer be part of learning to write. That's sad. Read Killing Off Cursive? Say It Isn't So and add your thoughts on cursive living on only in font form.