Monday, December 26, 2011

new book planned for late 2012

for a long time I've wanted to do "something" with Nicolas Jenson's 1471 Greek type, about which Victor Scholderer said - 1927 - "The universal fame of Jenson rests, of course, upon his roman type; but in truth his Greek is also in its way a masterpiece, and the best thing of its kind done in the fifteenth century". - here's a sample, from Aulus Gellius, Noctes atticae, 1472 -

and this is my provisional setting of it in 12pt New Hellenic, designed by Scholderer, but based, not on Jenson's but on one used by Joannes Rubeus in his Macrobius of 1492 , also in Venice - 

when I thought about printing Jenson's last Will & Testament some years ago, I asked local calligrapher Deirdre Hassed to draw some of Jenson's letters large as a way of illustrating the book - she drew six letters, and here are three of them, printed from magnesium blocks -

they are the double-letter sigma-theta (sth), psi, and an unusual version of pi - the text itself is from Plato's Gorgias and says something about the relation of philosophers to 'real life' - Deirdre's letters are approximately 2.5 to 3.5 inches high, or 60 to 90 mm - in any case, I intend to do the translation myself, and add a few other bits & pieces to make up a viable book -