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Dutton Speedwords is a made-up language written by Reginald John Garfield Dutton. The idea of Dutton Speedwords is to make frequent words short, and very frequent words very short. Dutton Speedwords can be used as a second language for international communications. Dutton Speedwords is also a shorthand writing system – this means you can use it to write quickly.
The method was made up by Reginald John Garfield Dutton (1886-1970) in 1922. It was first published in 1935. It was called International Symbolic Script. A year later, it was called Speedwords. It was changed in 1946 and 1951.
It has two uses; to be a language and to be used for writing quickly. Dutton hoped that this would mean more people would learn it because they could use it for two reasons.
The books that Dutton wrote about Speedwords are not printed anymore. But Speedwords is now being used by more people because they find it is good for working online. For example, it makes it faster to type an email.
Another way of writing quickly is Pitman's shorthand. This uses special symbols instead of letters. Speedwords uses Roman letters. This makes it easier to learn. It also means it can be typed using a normal keyboard. Each word means only one thing. This means you do not need to use different forms of the same word.
The words used in Speedwords are the same as the words used in many other languages. The words are like short versions of the writer's own language.
- overview of Speedwords by Richard K Harrison 1994