The English Textura and Great Primer Uncials

Textura, known more commonly as "blackletter," is the oldest form of European movable type: it was this style of letter which appeared in the 42-line bible printed by Johann Gutenberg in Mainz around 1455. The subject chosen for this digitization is the English Textura cut by Henric Pieterszoon Lettersnijder before 1492, which emerged as the most common type for Dutch books of the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries. Amazingly, the brass "matrices" from which this type was cast still survive, in the collection of the Enschedé Museum in Haarlem. They may be the oldest set of matrices in the world.

Accompanying the textura lowercase is a set of "uncials," a medieval analogue of the modern drop cap, also cut by Pieterszoon around 1508. Both faces are reproduced from Sixteenth Century Printing Types of the Low Countries, by H. D. L. Vervliet and Harry Carter, Menno Herzberger & Co, Amsterdam, 1968. The textura's lowercase a has been borrowed from the a-macron sort, the hairlines of its lowercase o have been thinned, and its lowercase d has been widened. As with the other faces in the Historical Allsorts package, characters that postdate the original source have been fabricated; it is otherwise authentic.


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    Texture. The product of an unusual design process, the fonts of the Historical Allsorts retain all the handsome idiosyncrasies of the typefaces they revive.

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    Special Characters. Each of the Historical Allsorts includes the complete complement of characters provided in the original source.

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    Language Support. The Historical Allsorts features our Latin-X™ character set, covering more than 140 languages throughout the world — including all of Central Europe.

What‘s Inside

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