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Garamond Font Stylistics: History and Modern Usage Report (Assessment)


Garamond is a name that can be frequently found in typography since it is the name given to a variety of Old Style fonts. The history of Garamond font dates many centuries back to the lifetime of Claude Garamond, a punch-cutter and publisher who lived and worked in France during the 1500s. Historically, this punch-cutter is known as the first professional who acted as a retailer and made the design and sale of punches his business. Since back then, the laws of private inventions were underdeveloped.

The designed never managed to acquire any revenues from his inventions even though they became incredibly influential all around Europe of that time. Greek, Roman, and italic fonts designed by Garamond were purchased by various publishers to print outstanding literary works of the 1500s, including “Paraphrasis in Elegantiarum Libros Laurentii Vallae” by Erasmus (Font Designer – Claude Garamond, 2015).

As a result, Garamond’s work was re-created and adopted by other punch-cutters. In 1561, after Claude Garamond died, his wife had to sell all of his punches and tools. As a result, his typefaces disappeared for two hundred years. Later, it was brought back to life by modern designers and French National Printing Service and American Type Founders, namely. The last name of the original designer was kept to recognize Garamond fonts.

Mainly, the history of typefaces stating from the 15th century is divided into several different periods. Old style covers changes and development that date back to the 15th-17th centuries. Transitional style can generally be referred to as the mid of the 18th century. Finally, Modern style includes the achievements of the late 18th century. After that, such styles and Slab Serif, Sans Serif, Decorative, and Script styles occurred.

They were developed during the 19th and 20th centuries. When font families are compared with one another, the professionals contrast between their x-height, serifs and bracketing, stroke variations, and stress (Family Classifications of Type, n. d.). Compared to more modern styles, Old Style is characterized by little contrast between thin and thick strokes, rounded letters, presence of bracketed serifs, eight and two o’clock stress. The transitional style has vertical stress, finer strokes, and bracketed serifs. The modern style contains no bracketing, vertical stress, abrupt contrast between thin and thick strokes, and letters and constructed.

Garamond font is characterized by fluid, yet rather consistent nature. One of the qualities that distinguish this font is specific shapes of a and e letters with small bowl and eye responsively. Besides, the letter W looks like two Vs laid one over the other. Top serifs in this font are descending mildly. As in all Old Style fonts, the definition between thin and thick strokes in Garamond is little. There are a large number of variations of Garamond font such as Garamond Classico, Elegant, and Adobe family.

Garamond font today is not as popular as it used to be in Europe during the 16th century, yet it is still used and popularized in a variety of countries. This font was chosen for this paper because it has a rather mysterious history that contains birth, life, and death of the font, as well as its revival in the 19th century.

Nowadays, Garamond font can be found in a variety of published books, newspapers, logos, and websites. A good example of the use of this font is American editions of popular book series for youth such as “Hunger Games.” One more literary demonstration of the use of Garamond is “Harry Potter” volumes also published in the USA. It is also the favorite font of the well-known American editor and writer, Dave Eggers, the author of “The Circle.”

Reference List

Family Classifications of Type. Fonts. Web.

(2015). Linotype. Web.

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IvyPanda. (2020, May 4). Garamond Font Stylistics: History and Modern Usage. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/garamond-font-stylistics-history-and-modern-usage/

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"Garamond Font Stylistics: History and Modern Usage." IvyPanda, 4 May 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/garamond-font-stylistics-history-and-modern-usage/.

1. IvyPanda. "Garamond Font Stylistics: History and Modern Usage." May 4, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/garamond-font-stylistics-history-and-modern-usage/.


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IvyPanda. "Garamond Font Stylistics: History and Modern Usage." May 4, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/garamond-font-stylistics-history-and-modern-usage/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Garamond Font Stylistics: History and Modern Usage." May 4, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/garamond-font-stylistics-history-and-modern-usage/.

References

IvyPanda. (2020) 'Garamond Font Stylistics: History and Modern Usage'. 4 May.

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