Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A kind of mediaeval document written in duplicate (or more) on a single piece of parchment, then cut across a single word, so that each holder of a portion can prove it matches the others.
  • n. A papal decree whose circulation, unlike an encyclical, is limited to the Roman curia.
  • n. The last part of a fine of land; the "foot of the fine".

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A writing which, requiring a counterpart, was engrossed twice on the same piece of parchment, with a space between, in which was written the word chirographum, through which the parchment was cut, and one part given to each party. It answered to what is now called a charter party.
  • n. The last part of a fine of land, commonly called the foot of the fine.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A deed which, requiring a counterpart, was engrossed twice on the same piece of parchment with a space between, in which was written a word or words, or the capital letters of the alphabet, through which the parchment was cut and one part given to each party, so that the correspondence of the two might be easily shown.
  • n. A contrivance for holding a beginner's hand in a prescribed position while be is learning to write.

Etymologies

Ancient Greek χειρόγραφος (kheirographos, "written with the hand") χείρ (kheir, "hand") + γράφω (graphō, "write"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • A century later, Pope John Paul II wrote his chirograph on sacred music, reminding Catholics that the 1903 work was still valid in essence: that the closer music was to Gregorian chant in form, the more suitable it was for the Mass, and vice versa.

    Musings of a Pertinacious Papist

  • _ -- I have, in a small collection of Sussex deeds, two which present the following peculiarity: they have the usual slip of parchment and lump of wax pendant from the lower edge, but the wax, instead of bearing an armorial figure, a merchant's mark, or any other of the numerous devices formerly employed in the authentication of deeds instead of one's chirograph, has neatly inserted into it a small wreath composed of two or three stalks of grass (or rather hay) carefully plaited, and forming

    Notes and Queries, Number 71, March 8, 1851 A Medium of Inter-communication for Literary Men, Artists, Antiquaries, Genealogists, etc.

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