Here at Hillsdale, we love old books. Like books in Greek. Or Latin. Or Greek and then Latin. But even if you read Greek better than Homer himself, your linguistic ninja skills are often powerless against your professor’s handwriting. If squinting fruitlessly at the margins of your blue book has left you befuddled, fear not: after a lengthy expedition in Delp, the code has been cracked. What follows are examples of professor handwriting, translated by … other professors. Native speakers, if you will. Some of the most unusual handwriting on the hill– the creative, the eclectic, and the scrawl of an over-caffeinated doctor (of philosophy, that is)– is laid open to public understanding. Read, comprehend, and be enlightened. Or dismayed, depending on what those margin notes say.


Dr. Dutton Kearney, Associate Professor of English

His handwriting resembles Microsoft Office’s papyrus font, in a very small font size. Discovered on a piece of Hillsdale stationery outside his office, this quote from T.S. Eliot is one of his favorites.


Dr. Dwight Lindley, Assistant Professor of English

Known throughout campus for having his own font, Dr. Lindley’s fun and creative handwriting gives that same T.S. Eliot quote some serious personality.


Dr. Justin Jackson, Professor of English

Admit it, we all struggled a little bit with the word “unattractive” in this one. The quote is from the Brothers Karamazov.


Dr. John Somerville, Professor of English

This is why having a translator on the inside is helpful. Professors can recognize that the quote is from the Brothers Karamazov, so you don’t have to figure out that it says “unattractive.” Phew.


Dr. Eric Hutchinson, Associate Professor of Classics

His handwriting matches his hair. That is all.


Dr. Ryan Hutchinson, Associate Professor of Mathematics

Sibling rivalry. The difference between classics and math. We report, you decide.


Dr. David Stewart, Professor of History

Small, compact. Probably isn’t making you feel better about your own handwriting in your blue book.


Dr. Jordan Wales, Assistant Professor of Theology

Most wedding invitations don’t have script this beautiful.


Dr. Kevin Teegarden, Associate Professor of Spanish 

A fairytale told in remarkable cursive. Remarkable primarily because it’s cursive at all.


Dr. Fred Yaniga, Associate Professor of German

In Germany, job applicants have to handwrite their resumes so their future bosses can judge them based on their handwriting. We’re guessing Dr. Yaniga got hired.


Dr. Christopher Busch, Professor of English

Thankfully, we didn’t have to spend two years beside a pond to find meaning in this quote. We just had to ride the elevator to the fourth floor.


Dr. Kelly Franklin, Assistant Professor of English

Lives on the fourth floor.


Dr. Benedict Whalen, Assistant Professor of English

The greatest of all contests may be to protect the soul, but the eyes are the windows to the soul. And cursive is hard on them sometimes.


Dr. Richard Gamble, Professor of History

Just look at that slant. The evenness. The clarity. Your elementary-school penmanship teacher just might follow in the steps of Leonardo da Vinci’s painting instructor and never write again.


Dr. Michael Beyer, Sage Center Production Manager

The backwards hooks on the letters make your brain feels like it’s reading left-to-right and right-to-left at the same time.


Dr. Matthew Gaetano, Assistant Professor of History

Picked the exact same quote as Dr. Beyer, completely by accident. How’s that for cross-departmental overlap. Dr. Kalthoff once said that he remembers this handwriting from back when he used to read it in blue books.


Dr. Daniel Coupland, Associate Professor of Education

Anybody with handwriting this clear belongs in education. A kid could learn to read this by age 3.


Dr. Michael Jordan, Professor of English

His handwriting doesn’t seem to like cemented boundaries any better than Gillian Rose.


Dr. Lorraine Murphy, Associate Professor of English

Her handwriting seems to be handling those cemented boundaries just fine.


Dr. Paul Rahe, Professor of History

His quote choice says it all. To translate it would be to lose the original meaning of the text.