Beautiful Fonts from Ages Gone By

A Blog About Language
May 9 2014 3:28 PM

Beautiful Fonts from Ages Gone By. (Eat Your Heart Out, Helvetica!)

A version of this post appeared on The Week:

helvetica
"Spare a serif?"

From simple to ornate, from angular to curvy, from lines to ribbons, go way beyond Helvetica with these samples from The Book of Ornamental Alphabets.

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1. 8th and 9th centuries:

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2. 10th century:

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3. 11th century:

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4. 13th century:

image004

5. 14th century:

image005

6. 15th and 16th centuries:

image006

7. 16th century:

image007

8. 16th century:

image008

9. 16th century:

image009

10. 17th century:

image010

Arika Okrent holds a Ph.D. in linguistics and a first-level certification in Klingon. She is the author of In the Land of Invented Languages.

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