Balzac's Handwriting Analysis

The great French author Balzac used to write novels all the time. They became very popular, and Balzac was acclaimed by all the people. His hobby was to look at people's handwriting. In this way, he used to scrutinise the character of the person. He could see what kind of person the individual was and whether he would become a great man or a good man.

Many, many people used to come to Balzac during his free time. They used to come to see him, not because he was a handwriting expert, but to chat with him while he was examining their handwriting. They were so clever! They were killing two birds with one stone. They wanted to be with such a great writer and, at the same time, they wanted to have their handwriting analyzed. Balzac would say something nice or sometimes criticise this or that. Even though he would criticise something about their handwriting and see that their character was not good, they used to get tremendous joy that they were able to be in his company for some time. It went on like this for many years.

One day an elderly woman came to see Balzac with a little boy's handwriting. He said, "Are you the mother of the little boy who wrote this?"

"No," she said.

"Are you the grandmother?"

"No, I am not the grandmother."

"Are you a friend of this little boy's family?"

She said, "No, I am not."

"Good! Since you are not a relative or a family friend of this boy, I can tell you frankly about his character," exclaimed Balzac. "You have brought me such horrible handwriting! I am sorry to tell you, he will be a useless fellow! But do not tell his relatives that he is totally useless. I can clearly see it from his handwriting."

The old lady smiled at him and said, "I am not his relative, but I was the teacher of this boy before he became a most famous writer. Now this is your own handwriting and I was your teacher! I immediately recognised you. Now that you have become famous, you do not know who I am. I was your primary school teacher."

Balzac got a shock! He said to himself, "What have I done?" Then he realised, "This is what I need. Either I give up this handwriting analysis or I have to study it thoroughly."

Balzac asked the old lady to stay. He was so moved she had come to see him, especially at her age. She told him, "I took a page from your school notebook and I saved it. I saw and felt that you would become a great person, so I kept your handwriting and I treasured it."

Balzac said, "I treasure you. I treasure you infinitely more."