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This is a graphological sign where the border between psychic and physic becomes really impalpable: physical weakness clearly arises from a descending movement, as demonstrated by a wide range of cases about elderly people now available. In Forensic Graphology, in case of lawsuit about a will, this can become a very important remark in assessing the spontaneity of the writing movement. In the elderly, the sign Descending can also be present, notwithstanding the material perceptive support of the line below, proving the fact that the keeping-on-the-line movement requires a perfect functioning of a neuromuscular apparatus to allow it. It is not difficult, in such cases, to understand how physical weakness can affect the psychic level causing inner frailty, understood as incapacity to sustain efforts and therefore, unavoidably, necessity to be satisfied with the least onerous solution as regards energy, though less favored by  the Ego.
Whilst the physical and psychic meaning of such a movement in the elderly is totally obvious, it is not as easy to understand the existence and the reason of being of the Descending sign in the young, whose energetic tuning is actually much higher.
In order to realize a descending movement on a line it is necessary to lose control – progressively, imperceptibly, unconsciously –  of one of the graphic features that have to be learned: the capacity of keeping a steady muscular tone, needed to keep the writing horizontal. It is clear this is a learned movement, as keeping a bicycle steady while riding it, and such ability is built up through an unfinished succession of attempts.
Moretti reads such a lack of tone as weakening: something along with the graphic process did not keep a steady push to maintain the writing on the line, and gives it the meaning of moral weakness, differently quantified according to the intensity of this descending movement.
In a similar way to what said about Rising, mathematical measure allows a maximum value 10/10 in the case of descending movement overrunning the line below. The other values are calculated according to this one. (G. Moretti, Graphology Treaty)
The psychological sign ascribed to it – moral weakness – should be understood in a sense of lack of courage, depression emerging especially when the personality must face troubles, sacrifices, contradictions; it implies a disposition to yield rather than oppose, as opposing implies to sacrifice one’s own inner tranquility.

Weakness necessarily brings along actions tending to the slightest resistance against the environment and the others, and easily become cowardly; actions which the personality defends as fair and necessary, because “objectively” it is not possible to do otherwise. However, the Ego clearly feels, perceives its limitation, the suffering coming from it, though it denies, projecting it outwards, such an energy loss and the unavoidable, following giving up.
This sign – a substantial sign of the will – should be evaluated according to the context it belongs to, though it necessarily affects all the qualities due to its meaning of intrinsic weakness, passive disposition to being influenced. It impedes, in this sense, the very same process of Ego individuation, which requires evolution through the differentiation of personal uniqueness.

  • Fig. 8 – Descending above 10/10
    Handwriting: Descending

The case shown above, statistically really uncommon – due to the intensity of this sign in an individual little above 20 years old – questions us about the psyche/soma relationship because of this marked descending on the line.
This descending, apparently spontaneous, as it is not straight (it could be a sign of incorrect position of the paper sheet), but it is noticeable that, after a dramatic early fall, the writing is brought back on the line – about at halfway – as the writer’s eye begins to perceive the amount of descending and the Ego spontaneously carries on an adjustment. Unavoidably, the individual personality gets into a weak and confused state due to such strong weakness.
This writing is especially interesting as it belongs to one of those case of a young man who killed his parents, depending on hardly defined motivation: by law, having acted on trifle reasons is considered to be an aggravating circumstance.