Born in 1882, Gill was an artist, letter carver, gadfly, polemicist, and social reformer. In 1925, he had started drawing alphabets and printing books, and in 1931, this plainspoken little book was a fustian and forceful argument for common sense in design, composed for anyone remotely interested in the subtle and evolving challenge of the typographic arts. Set rag right, with tight word spacing, it is a model of composition. The text, like most of Gill's, is exasperating, exorbitant, and exciting. But Gill was, above all, a craftsman, whose work always reflected his philosophy and whose hand always followed his moral convictions.
"It deals with technical difficulties, the history and evolution of letters, the craft of typography, type design and manufacturing, even orthography, and is written with clarity, humility, and a touch of humor." - Paul Rand, The New York Times Book Review.