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Did you know ...

  • Theobald Stapleton's 1639 catechism was the first Roman Catholic book in Irish to be printed in antiqua, and that it used simplified spellings that did not become standard for another 300 years?

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Antiqua
A facsimile of Nicolas Jenson's roman type used in Venice circa 1470. The abstracted long "s" (resembling a barless "f") fell out of use in the 19th century.

Antiqua typefaces are those designed between about 1470 and 1600, specifically those by Nicolas Jenson and the Aldine roman commissioned by Aldus Manutius and cut by Francesco Griffo. Antiqua letterforms were modelled on a synthesis of Roman inscriptional capitals and Carolingian writing. They are also known as Venetian types.

Antiqua's Germanic opposite is blackletter, in which the letter forms are broken or fractured. In 19th- and 20th-century Germany, there was a dispute over whether German should be written in antiqua or the highly-developed Fraktur blackletter.

Antiqua script is also occasionally called old style, differentiated from modern styles by the more or less uniform thickness of all strokes and by slanted serifs.

See also

References

  • Nesbitt, Alexander The History and Technique of Lettering (c) 1957, Dover Publications, Inc. ISBN 0486204278 , Library of Congress Catalogue Card Number: 57-13116. The Dover edition is an abridged and corrected republication of the work originally published in 1950 by Prentice-Hall, Inc. under the title Lettering: The History and Technique of Lettering as Design.
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