"fist": handwriting (1823), radiotelegraphy (1922)

Jesse Sheidlower jester at PANIX.COM
Sun Apr 17 11:21:44 UTC 2005

On Sun, Apr 17, 2005 at 05:41:21AM -0400, Benjamin Zimmer wrote:
> This sense of "fist" apparently derives from an earlier colloquialism
> describing a person's handwriting or signature.  Neither sense is in the
> OED, though the handwriting sense appears in the 1922 Roget's and RHUD:

HDAS does have the 'telegrapher's distinctive style' sense, with the
first quote from a 1929 article in American Speech.

Thanks for these impressive citations.

Jesse Sheidlower

More information about the Ads-l mailing list