Friday, September 9, 2016

bembo (griffo's prize)


"bembo" refers to Griffo's cuts for Manutius, it appears in 1496. Petri Bembi de Aetna Angelum Chabrielem liber, the first use of italics (?) so, is Griffo responsible for the first italics? It seems so.

Bembo is,

1- kind of gothic,
2- kind of cursive, 
3- influenced by the early 15th century miniscule by Niccolo de Niccoli known as cancelleresca corsiva  "chancery hand." the trick is that the pen is held at a fortyfive degree angle for speed. the corsiva is akin to Humanist calligraphy. That is to say, the propagation of letters, knowledge in the form of literature.


a recent development (though I don't like it too much is the Zapfino by Herman Zapf.


It's ok, what I object is that it lacks what this one (by Ludovico Vicentino degli Arrighi) has.
What happens is that degli Arrighi is designing a typeface without understanding what drives the writing, i.e, a mix of social conventions, social status & stratification. You cannot expect that court writing in time will not become more and more obscure as the practice gets stereotyped, until it was banned altogether in 1731. It had stopped being functional. So, what's Zapfino lacking?




what is it? character!