Posted by Ed Stansell on September 23, 2002
Your meaning is correct and your origin is partly correct. In my type catalogs from which I regularly purchase type from the foundry, they list "sorts as the following items: !,.?"':;$+=_-()*&^%$#@. One can't quite do type composition without these characters. So being "out of sorts meant things were not quite right.
You may have a book that says what
sorts are, but I choose to believe the people who make them.