Page 16 - May 2017
P. 16

|  Aldus Manutius |                             |  Roderic Findlay (10458)  |


             ldus Manutius was born around   under the direction of Stanley Morison in
             1449-1450. He lived in Venice from   1929. Bembo was inspired by a type used
       A1490 onwards and, with the help      by Aldus in 1495 in an edition of Cardinal
       of a group of compositors and classical   Bembo’s de Aetna, and it became one of
       scholars, he became the foremost printer   the most popular faces of the twentieth
       in Europe. He printed editions of Latin   century for both book and display work.
       and Greek texts as well as inexpensive   Bembo italic was developed from a type
       pocket-size books. Two very fi ne typefaces   made by Giovanni Tagliente in 1524.
       were made in the twentieth century from     In both faces there is more contrast
       the types used by Aldus.              between thick and thin strokes than in
        The Hypnerotomachia Poliphili by     the earlier Venetian types; the capital M
       Francesco Colonna                                      has splayed sides
       was printed in 1499,                                   and the W is two Vs
       using type cut by                                      overlapping. In the
       Francesco Griff o                                       1960s the Chiswick
       of Bologna. This                                       Press described
       facsimile, called                                      Bembo in their
       Poliphilus, was issued                                 handbook, Keyboard
       by the Monotype                                        Typefaces, thus:
       Corporation in 1923.                                    “Monotype Bembo
       It was a considerable                                  is based on the
       engineering triumph                                    type used by Aldus
       to reproduce a                                         Manutius for the
       fi fteenth century                                      printing of Cardinal
       typeface on the                                        Bembo’s De Aetna
       Monotype, but some                                     in 1495. This was
       experts, such as                                       the prototype for all
       Stanley Morison,                                       subsequent Italian,
       doubted the wisdom                                     French, Dutch and
       of producing such                                      English typefaces
       an exact copy.                                         in the authentic
       Nevertheless,                                          ‘old face’ tradition,
       Poliphilus is a                                        and its Monotype
       successful book                                        revival has become
       face. Its very                Aldus Manutius           the standard ‘old
       irregularity makes                                     face’ and the most
       it pleasant and restful to read, and it is   extensively used book face of our time.
       a refreshing antidote to the somewhat   Bembo has character without obtrusive
       clinical computer-set typefaces that are so   individuality, a true sense of tradition
       common today. The italic for Poliphilus is   without a trace of archaic fl oweriness,
       Blado, designed by Ludovico degli Arrighi   and is one of the most versatile and
       and used by Antonio Blado in 1539.    adaptable text faces available for keyboard
         Bembo is the more widely used of the   composition today. The accompanying
       two typefaces inspired by Aldus. It was   italic is a true chancery letter of great
       issued by the Monotype Corporation    delicacy and charm.”
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