The Romans were among the first to develop a written script, and their penmanship was round and even. In the Middle Ages, the price of parchment soared, and handwriting, accordingly, became small and condensed. Years later, in the eighteenth century, elegant handwriting became a sign of refinement. Later still, in the twentieth century, American schools taught a standardized cursive by encouraging students to draw loopy letters through horizontal lines. Now hardly anyone writes anything at all. Through September 16, the Morgan Library and Museum is showcasing the handwriting of more than a hundred major artists, authors, composers, and historical figures drawn from the Pedro Corrêa do Lago Collection. A selection is presented below.