Typo: A Monthly Newspaper and Literary Review, Volume 4
The July Inland Printer is an excellent number. It opens with two good practical articles on presswork and stereotyping respectively—the latter, which is illustrated, by Carl Schraub-stadter, jun. A good deal of space is devoted to the proceedings of the sixth annual session of the National Editorial Association, held in Boston. Mr John Bassett contributes a biography, with portrait, of Mr B. R. Alexander, the first technical instructor in London in the art of printing; and Mr Malcolm M'Pherson gives his experiences of printing in the Indian jungle.
The Union Printer has an interesting biographical sketch of Mr. Walter Lodia, « the most celebrated printer in the world, » who has « visited every place on the earth where type is set. » (We don't think he has been to New Zealand. He has written to us from Argentine, and kindly sent us papers, but we doubt whether he has yet set foot in the finest country in the world.) We hope to see Mr. Lodia some day. We regret to say that the Union Printer publishes Mr. Lodia's portrait. Some of the weekly sketch-portraits in this paper are fairly good; but the majority are anything but flattering to the gentlemen described as « Eminent Members of the Craft. »
The Gutenberg Journal again sharply criticises the French postal department for its rigid interpretation of the prohibition of private communications on proof-slips. « Kindly return without delay » must be sent in a separate cover, and pay letter rates. Postal officials are much the same everywhere. It was only last year that the New Zealand authorities (after passing it for eighteen months) interdicted us from printing on the Typo postal wrapper the words, « A Monthly Newspaper and Review, » &c.! This we presume, was taken in the nature of a private communication.
Paper and Press for July contains a portrait of Mr. George W. Leach, jun., artist, and a collection of initials and book vignettes designed and drawn by him. They are original in design, and excellent specimens of decorative composition.
Caslon's Circular, No. 54, is the best yet issued. Those who do not keep a file would do well to preserve this number. In addition to specimens of the original Caslon founts, roman and black, it contains the full text of Mr. Talbot Reed's paper on « O1d and New Fashions in Typography. »
In the Artist Printer for July, Mr. C. R. Barns, St. Louis, protests against dropping the ordinal form in dates. To write « 3 June, » or « June 3, » instead of « 3rd, » offends him. It « illustrates a barbaric tendency to sacrifice all the idiomatic graces of our magnificent Anglo-Saxon inheritance for the sake of saving time and space, which should be resisted by every lover of good literature. » We think the critic is too particular, and not quite consistent. « A.D. 1890, » according to his theory, is a barbarous mixture of Latin abbreviations and Arabic symbols. Are we to write « Twenty-second of twelfth month, eighteen-hundred-and-nineteenth year of our Lord. »? or, briefly, « 22nd, 12th, 1890th »? Mr. Herbert L. Baker has an article about the awkward English usage in regard to quotations. We shall have something to say on the subject one day. In our own work-we use the Spanish signs—though we don't altogether like them—as preferable to the unsightly turned commas.
The May-June Superior Printer starts with « A Valuable Idea, » by Mr. G. W. Bateman. Mr. G. W. B. is a « crank » who advocates the entire abolition of punctuation marks, and his article is set up on that principle. The idea is not quite a new one: we remember when all the New Zealand Statutes were set up on a similar plan. Very few people could understand them when punctuated (as they are now), but no one could make head or tail of them then, and the lawyers had a harvest. Every legal gentlemen had his own private interpretation; the judge differed from them all; and the Court of Appeal could find another reading still. Mr. Bateman, we note, is still conservative enough to space between the words, and divide the matter into paragraphs. He also uses caps in the ordinary fashion. We protest against this concession to popular prejudice. whynotabolishspaces andcapsaswellmrbateman