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The Origin of the Serif: Brush Writing and Roman Letters Paperback – July, 1991

ISBN-13: 978-0962974014 ISBN-10: 0962974013 Edition: 2nd

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 311 pages
  • Publisher: St Ambrose Univ; 2nd edition (July 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0962974013
  • ISBN-13: 978-0962974014
  • Product Dimensions: 11.5 x 8.4 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,378,817 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By JB on August 27, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This insightful book by late Edward Catich provided his view to inscription of the Column of Trajan. This column has always been studied by calligraphers, typographers, artists. Its capital letters became the foundation of today's capital letters. Yet few people could see through misinformation and false theories accumulated throughout centries around the way it was first written. Rev. Catich as an expert of both calligraphy and stone-cutting, clarified these wrong ideas. He proved that this column's text was brush written. The major charastics (serifs, v-cuts, ...) of the Trajan letters had little to do with the limition of stone cutter's tools. In fact, these tools are very capable of reproducing calligraphy.
Either you want to study calligraphy/typography, or you are interested in Roman history, you can read this book. As a computer engineer who speaks Chinese and lives in Taiwan, I found this book attracted me so much, I couldn't wait to buy all of his other books. When I was a kid, I had studied Chinese brush calligraphy, that's why I find it so easy to familarize with this Roman craft. I had also learned a bit about Chinese stamp making, which is basically cutting letters on a very small piece of stone. I knew what it was like to cut sone. That made Rev. Catich's theory very convincing to me.
This book is totally enjoyable. I wish the publisher could publish a new edition. Despite of the minor flaws pointed by Edward Tufts in his (another masterpiece) _Visual Explainations_, there are still some insignificant mistakes wating to be corrected. The Latin scientific names on page 98 were not properly printed. The first name (genus) should be capitalized, but the second one (species) should always be lower cased. Therefore the plant _Phragmites Aegyptiaca_ should be printed as _Phragmites aegyptiaca_. Otherwise, this book is a masterpiece to me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By JB on September 5, 2000
Format: Paperback
This insightful book by late Edward Catich provided his view to inscription of the Column of Trajan. This column has always been studied by calligraphers, typographers, artists. Its capital letters became the foundation of today's capital letters. Yet few people could see through misinformation and false theories accumulated throughout centries around the way it was first written. Rev. Catich as an expert of both calligraphy and stone-cutting, clarified these wrong ideas. He proved that this column's text was brush written. The major charastics (serifs, v-cuts, ...) of the Trajan letters had little to do with the limition of stone cutter's tools. In fact, these tools are very capable of reproducing calligraphy.
Either you want to study calligraphy/typography, or you are interested in Roman history, you can read this book. As a computer engineer who speaks Chinese and lives in Taiwan, I found this book attracted me so much, I couldn't wait to buy all of his other books. When I was a kid, I had studied Chinese brush calligraphy, that's why I find it so easy to familarize with this Roman craft. I had also learned a bit about Chinese stamp making, which is basically cutting letters on a very small piece of stone. I knew what it was like to cut sone. That made Rev. Catich's theory very convincing to me.
This book is totally enjoyable. I wish the publisher could publish a new edition. Despite of the minor flaws pointed by Edward Tufts in his (another masterpiece) _Visual Explainations_, there are still some insignificant mistakes wating to be corrected. The Latin scientific names on page 98 were not properly printed. The first name (genus) should be capitalized, but the second one (species) should always be lower cased. Therefore the plant _Phragmites Aegyptiaca_ should be printed as _Phragmites aegyptiaca_. Otherwise, this book is a masterpiece to me.
This book is the same as another item "Origin of the Serif" in Amazon's database.
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By E. J. Petersen on November 2, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you're interested in beautiful lettering and its origins, this book's for you. Treat yourself or a friend to a small cultural treasure.
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