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Engraver, communicator of content

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In the hierarchy of the international typographic canon, engraved lettering has not received the acknowledgement it deserves. This article amends the international typographic canon to include the engraved letter through demonstrating how engraved lettering has significantly influenced the evolution of typographic form. By examining four historical specimens of engraved printing, the author explains how engravers utilized materials and craft-oriented opportunities to deliver content that current trends in typography have all but forgotten. Four important works of engraved lettering will be discussed: Het Groote Tafereel der Dwaasheid/The Great Mirror of Folly (1720?), A New Book of Cyphers (1726), George Bickham’s The Museum of Arts: or, The Curious Repository (1745?) and The Lincoln Crest & Monogram Album (c.late 1800s).

Keywords: copperplate; cyphers; engraving; lettering; monograms; stationery; typography

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/btwo.1.2.163_1

Affiliations: Delgado Community College, New Orleans

Publication date: March 1, 2011

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  • Book 2.0 is a new, interdisciplinary peer-reviewed journal which aims to publish articles and reviews on developments in book creation and design, (including the latest progressions in technology and software affecting illustration, design and book production). It will also explore innovations in distribution, marketing and sales, and book consumption, and in the research, analysis and conservation of book-related professional practices. Book 2.0 aims to provide a forum for promoting and sharing the most original and progressive practice in the teaching of writing, illustration, book design and production, and publishing across all educational sectors.
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