[CAP Online]





[Register for Updates]

[Your Turn]

A brief history of newspaper type



This was a logical move considering the history of types used for newspapers. Didot and egyptian types were once thought to be the clearest, with their geometric origins. Century Schoolbook (1919), on most laser printers, was an example of nineteenth-century thinking: Benton's aim in designing it was to provide a clear typeface after countless legibility tests.




   Times (1931) was the departure, where Morison returned to the clarity of letters such as Robert Granjon's Plantin. This was a horizontal typeface that used an oblique axis, providing the first issues of The Times set in the type with a new dynamism. It proved that oldstyle and transitional designs could suit newspaper typography. Times' origins meant it could be applied outside newspaper typography, and it found itself in novels, magazines, even logotypes.
   The successor to Times Roman, Times Europa by Walter Tracy (1971), was a more open design and followed this path.
   The horizontal influence was less evident in Matthew Carter's Olympian (1970) and Robin Nicholas' Monotype Nimrod (1980), which is used for the text of The Guardian.
   Porchez cites Gerard Unger's Swift (1987) as the example of the new generation of newspaper type, with its high x-height and open design. Le Monde takes the theme further.
   Roger Black, the renowned editorial designer, rates the Le Monde design most highly. Porchez explains that 'it prevents the history of newspapers from stopping at the nineteenth century, and the overuse of typefaces with an industrial, mechanical appearance, in which are an upright axis and predominant verticality.'

'Porchez explains that "it prevents the history of newspapers from stopping at the nineteenth century."'

[Click here for next page] [Click here for previous page]




A world of concerns

A short history of newspaper type

The story continues

Le Monde's new face

Jean-François Porchez - biography


Copyright ©1995-6 by Jack Yan & Associates. All rights reserved. All trademarks are the properties of their respective owners and may be subject to protection in certain jurisdictions. 'Designature', 'CAP' and 'CAP Online' are the properties of Jack Yan & Associates. Email us here.