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Typo: A Monthly Newspaper and Literary Review, Volume 4

Recent Specimens

page 15

Recent Specimens.

With the present number of Typo is issued a supplement showing the « Daily Telegraph » series of newspaper founts produced by the Patent Typefoundry. Their clear and legible style, and special suitability for newspaper work, need not be enlarged upon—our readers will examine this beautifully-printed specimen for themselves. By direct mail the same firm send us a copy of the Daily Telegraph of 6th January composed from these founts. Instead of being (like our supplement) carefully worked on fine paper, the newspaper is run off from stereos, on a rapid web machine; but the beauty and legibility of the type is still evident. Why do not our colonial dailies follow the style of the English morning papers, in the reasonable-sized page and moderate-sized type? Minion and ruby are very little used in the colony; but their use, and a more compact style of composition, would be far preferable to the mania for enlargement of page, which results in the unwieldy and flimsy sheets—for increase in size seems always followed by a falling-off in quality. A newspaper that adds two square feet superficial to its space during a temporary « boom, » either fills a page with dummies for years after, or has to reduce its size. It is much easier, in bad times, to revert for a while to larger type, and the change does not produce the same amount of comment.—From the same house we have a sample fount of their pica combination border No. 2, of 6 characters:

We have already referred to this simple and useful combination, which is equally suitable for borders or groundworks. In either case a plain and uniform or a variegated style may be adopted, at the discretion of the compositor. There is only one running-piece, in the ordinary sense; the other five characters are such as we have described in former issues as « corners » and « diagonals, » and to produce their best effect require to be arranged in fours:

We have made use of this border for headpieces in several places in the present issue.

Several novelties in the line of ornament are shown by the Union Typefoundry. « Turner » ornaments, 15 characters, all on nonpareil body, are very heavy line ornaments, one side flat. « Underscore » ornaments, 6 characters, are irregular imitations of pen-work. « Triple » ornaments, 14 characters, constitute a nonpareil border of three irregular parallel heavy rules, with centres, corners, and finishing-pieces. We do not admire it. The « polka dot » borders (1 character each, 12- and 24-point) we have already noted. With this and the « Underscore, » fly-spots may be very successfully imitated by the comp whose taste inclines to realism. « Parker » ornaments, 11 characters, and « Powell » ornaments, 6 characters, are what our American friends call « slobs » —irregularly drawn, and distinguished by violent contrasts of black and white. Border 89 (2 characters) is just a nonpareil em rule and 8-pointed star. « Spray » border is a nonpareil running-piece of the calico-printers' style, with a corner that does not correspond. « Cathedral » border, (1 character) 24-point, is pretty, and makes a good groundwork—it is a light irregular design, something like the « Alligator » noted by us last November. The « Foster Tile Ornaments » (3 characters) are no doubt designed by the ingenious Chicago printer whose name they bear. They are squares—No. 1 solid, No. 2 streaked with white, No. 3 outlined on two sides, with a few dark spots. They are suited only for color work, and in two or three printings, produce a striking effect.

The Central Foundry sends us a handsome quarto book, in which, however, we do not find any novelty which we have not already noted. We see that a good series of Germans may be had in moderate-sized job-founts; but this is a line that few colonial printers require. The « Cushing » old-style series is a useful line of condensed antique, uniform in set and line with the romans on corresponding bodies, and very useful for side-heads.

Marder, Luse, & Co., show a new roman under the name of « Caxton Old-style, ranging in size from 18- to 60-point. It is boldly cut, and, as is usual in such faces, has the old style peculiarities exaggerated. One feature of the series is the very small beard at the foot, and consequent shortness of the descending letters.