Page 4 - February 2015
P. 4

book review

                    Hi story of tHe

   MoNotyPe CorPorAtioN
                   ––– by Judy Slinn, Sebastian Carter and Ricard Southall –––

   THIS book was launched at St Brides Foundation last            and is published for the PHS by the Vanbrugh Press, and
   November, during the AGM of the Printing Historical            printed by Henry Ling Ltd of Dorchester.
   Society (PHS). As a member of the PHS I was privileged
   to receive a courtesy copy.                                    The second point to make is that this book, with delivery,
                                                                  will cost you £52.80 from the Vanbrugh Press. So perhaps it
   The first thing to say is that this book is quite beautifully  would be useful to quote a description of the book from the
   produced, with the cover printed by letterpress at the Hand    Vanbrugh Press website (below).
   & Eye. The book is an icon of good printing and typography

   Background: "This important new publication is the first assessment of the Corporation’s history in
   its significant years between 1897 and 1992. Andrew Boag initiated this exciting project in order
   to publish Monotype’s business history. For this he commissioned leading business historian Judy
   Slinn. After raising sponsorship for the research and writing, and with support throughout from
   Richard Lawrence, the work expanded to cover the Corporation’s type development (written by
   Sebastian Carter) and the development of its composing technologies (written by Richard Southall).
   The continuing legacy of Monotype in high-quality type, along with the rescue of Monotype’s hot-
   metal business to the Type Archive is discussed by Boag and Susan Shaw in the book’s Epilogue.

   The 432-page book is beautifully designed (and co-Edited) by Christopher Burke in Monotype Dante
   with 256 illustrations (22 in colour). It is case bound with a dust jacket set in Monotype Bulmer 469
   and Castellar and printed by Hand & Eye Letterpress".

                                    (The Castellar type was loaned by BPS member 9970 Andrew Dolinski)

                  HIS BOOK IS IN THREE                            and innovation, and the pursuit of better
                   SECTIONS, Business History,                    productivity in printing technology. It is a truly
                   Typeface Design, and Technical                 exciting story of challenge and determination—
                   History. The authors of each                   coupled to total belief in their product—that
                   section are the leading experts                bore them on. It also was the reason that they
in their particular subject. Although I have yet                  did not see the very fast approaching new
to fully read the second and third sections,                      digital technology that was to drown them so
my reading of the first section has increased                     speedily.
my knowledge of the rise and decline of the
printing industry over the last century as no                     The second section is just why the Monotype
other publication has done. What comes                            Typefaces ruled the world and became the
over is that the Monotype Corporation saw                         yardstick for what we now still see as best
themselves as a business that had an almost                       typography and typeface design. This section
religious fervour in its dedication to excellence                 is absolutely full of both the history of good
                                                                  typeface design, and how the technology

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