A New History
The ﬁrst book that got me
interested in history. Ever.
Gutenberg’s Bible1 was set in gothic script
called Textura2, an example of blackletter type.
Roman letters, the kind of type most all of our books are set
in, emerged in Venice in the 1460s. A style of handwritten
script adopted by Italian humanists during the Renaissance
became to be known as Humanist Minuscule, and is the
basis for roman forms through to the present day.
Bembo, originally designed for the 1495 book De Aetna, is
the basis of Old Style fonts. Garamond followed in 1540.
First grid based font design was commissioned
by king Louis XIV in 1692.
Point, the measure used to gauge font sizes, was
invented by Pierre Simon Fournier in 1737.
Caslon, the ﬁrst inﬂuential English typeface was
designed in 1725 by typographer William Caslon.
John Baskerville ﬁrst
designed his namesake font
in 1757, then had to devise
a number of inventions to
print the thin shapes
accurately: new inks, glossy
paper, and hot pressing
were his ideas.
And surely more to come,
when I get to the ﬁfth page.