Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Ampersand, part 2 of 2

via shadycharacters
“From its ignoble beginnings a century after Tiro’s scholarly et, the ampersand assumed its now-familiar ‘&’ form with remarkable speed even as the Tironian et stayed rigidly immutable. The symbol’s visual development is perhaps best documented in a formidable piece of typographical detective work carried out by one Jan Tschichold, a graphic designer born in Leipzig in 1902…”
Read the rest here.

Image to the Right: Collected ampersands in Jan Tschichold’s The Ampersand: its origin and development (1957). Notable here are (1) Pompeiian graffiti; (8) an insular majuscule ampersand from the 7th century Book of Kells, and (13) an 8th century Merovigian ampersand, already recognisable as the modern ampersand form.

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