Although he drew inspiration from the work of these designers,  above all from Didot, no doubt Bodoni found his own style for his typefaces, which deservedly gained worldwide acceptance among printers. Bodoni also took care in the composition of his printing, using hierarchy and borders to create an appearance of elegance, and his range of type sizes allowed him flexibility of composition. Writing of meeting him in the year , James Edward Smith said: A very great curiosity in its way is the Parma printing-office, carried on under the direction of Mr. Bodoni, who has brought that art to a degree of perfection scarcely known before him.
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Taschen, Therefore an important task for font designers is to create fonts with large collections of glyphs for different scripts. Only when this is done can we say that we can make multi-language books with truly harmonious and beautiful pages. One may think that this task became relevant only in recent times.
Giambattista Bodoni — is a great reminder that this impression is just wrong. Typophiles may remember Bodoni for his great Latin fonts, which still are widely used today, or for his influential editions of classics. These scripts interested Bodoni throughout his career. Starting at the age of eighteen Bodoni worked with the exotica division of the Tipografia Poliglotta Vaticana where his work spanned Arabic, Tibetan and many other scripts.
Later, in Parma, he published a collection of bridal poems in 25 Oriental languages with Latin translations He personally cut 55, matrices for his multi-language books. Bodoni strived to combine calligraphic traditions of these scripts with the beauty and clarity of his superb typography. The book Manuale Tipografico is a major work of the great typographer. The first volume of the manual contains a huge collection of samples of Latin fonts: roman, italic and cursive, with variants, weights, sizes.
Margherita wrote in her preface that Bodoni considered it necessary for good typography to carry a collection of main fonts large enough so the difference between the adjacent sizes is not easily seen by a trained eye—a feat almost unheard of before the advent of digital typography. The preface also contains important musings by Bodoni about the fundamental of typographic art.
The book also includes many pages of astronomical, mathematical and medical symbols, decorative rules, ornaments and even musical sheets in several styles.
Besides being a huge source of invaluable information, the book is a pleasure to read; just turning its pages may make a great evening for a typophile. Since its publication in the Manuale became a very rare book.
In it was reprinted in numbered copies, which, of course, immediately became a prized rarity themselves. Thus a new mass market edition by Taschen is a very welcome project. A well preserved copy from Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin is reproduced here in all its glory. The book is printed on a good thick paper and is well bound.
Probably in order to keep the price lower this edition contains both volumes of the original Manuale in one large book albeit with two tassels.
This makes it rather heavy about nine pounds and somewhat difficult to handle. However, the binding allows one to open the book at any place without much problem. This book is a must for a font specialist or a typographer. Its relatively low price and beauty make it a good addition to a library of a book lover.
Bodoni Manual 1818-2018 200th Birthday
Advances in printing technology during the late eighteenth century allowed Bodoni to design letterforms with higher contrast between thick and thin strokes, and crisp horizontal serifs. Bodoni interpretations either work at display sizes and are impossible to read at text sizes, or are made to be legible at text sizes but look sloppy at display sizes. Users end up having to mix and match Bodonis, resulting in inconsistencies of design and quality. Years in the making, this font family includes a whopping 64 static font files and 2 variable font files, ensuring you will have the perfect Bodoni for every situation. Features No Compromises To put it simply, I made this typeface the best it could possibly be.
Folio x mm. Engraved frontispiece portrait by Francesco Rosaspina after Andrea Appiani, text and specimens enclosed within double rule border, specimens printed on rectos only, three folding plates of musical notation and over Roman, Greek and exotic types, borders, mathematical, astronomical, and other signs. Volume I: leaves; Volume II: leaves. Portrait lightly foxed, binding rubbed, overall a very fine copy, entirely untrimmed bound in the original orange boards with printed spine labels. It was completed under the care of his widow and Luigi Orsi, who was for twenty years foreman to Bodoni. Signora Bodoni, writing to M. I dare to believe that book-lovers will thank me for having published a volume which is so very important to Typography.