Serif A serif font is a typeface that has an extra stroke at the end of the vertical and Horizontal strokes of the main letter-form. The serifs help to move the reader’s eye along the horizontal line of the sentence. San serif Calligraphic Based on calligraphic writing, these faces often resemble lettering Drawn with a flat-tipped writing instrument. Transitional Type-styles that lacks the serif stroke at the end of the horizontal or vertical Strokes of the main letter-form. Refers to the typefaces such as baskerville and caslon and is a transition From the oldstyle or humanist tradition, started by jenson in the late 15th century, to the socalled modern designs of didot and bodoni in the late 18th century. Scripts Alignment Script typefaces simulate handwriting or calligraphy. Not often used for long quantities of body text. Many letters have strokes that join them to other letters. Decorative/display Displayl typefaces are used exclusively for decorative purposes, and are not suitable for body text. They have the most distinctive designs of all fonts, and may incorporate pictures of objects, animals, etc. Into the character designs. Blackletter Are the earliest typefaces used with the invention of the printing press, resemble the blackletter calligraphy of that time. Many people refer to them as “gothic script”. Commonly seen in awards certificates and formal or legal documents. Gaelic Describe which side of the column a block of body text is resting against. Ampersand = &. Baseline The imaginary rule where lines of text sit. Black A heavy typeface. Much thicker and denser than bold type. Body An imaginary rectangle surrounding a letterform, that defines its overall size. Fonts were first used for the irish language. They continue to enjoy use in Display type and type for signage. Gaelic typefaces make use of insular letterforms, that is, medieval scripts. Bold Monospaced Cicero These fonts are typefaces in which every glyph is the same width. The first monospaced typefaces were designed for typewriters, which could only move the same distance forward with each letter typed. Monospaced fonts are still important for computer programming, terminal emulation, and for laying out tabulated data in plain text documents. Examples of monospaced typefaces are courier, prestige elite, and monaco. Symbol Symbol, or dingbat, typefaces consist of symbols rather than normal text Characters. Examples include zapf dingbats, sonata, and wingdings. A heavier, thicker style of font. Generally used for headings, or for emphasis. A european unit of type measurement. Cap-height Height from the baseline, to the top of a standard capital letter. Condensed fonts Typeface where the letters and kerning are narrower than the main Font face. Drop cap Hyphenation and justification Descender Italic Dingbats Justified text The first letter of a paragraph of type that is larger than the rest of the body Copy. Usually drops into the lines of type beneath it, but can also extend above, in which case it is usually referred to as an ‘elevated cap’. Part of some lowercase characters that drops below the baseline. A non-standard, ornamental or illustrative font. Display fonts Are designed to be used for on-screen use, rather than for printed reproduction. Em A long ‘hyphen’ (although it can also refer to a measurement of space) traditionally being the length of an uppercase letter ‘m’. En A unit of measurement (usually applied to a ‘hyphen’ style dash) that is half the width of an em. Hyphenation and justification settings and preferences for blocks of type via specific style sheets, crucial for good typography, as blocks of type need to be controlled, to avoid visual flaws such as rivers, widows and orphans. These letterforms are variations of a type-style which are slanted at an angle. Is when a paragraph of text is set to the full width of the line length, so that it aligns flush on both sides. Justification Is the varying of the spaces between words in a justified block of text. This can help ensure a more readable and visually pleasing block of body copy Kerning To kern is to adjust the space between individual letter forms, to enhance readability. In body copy this is usually done to reduce the space, but can be used in headings to increase the space between ‘problem pairs’ of letters. Extended fonts Leading Font Ligatures Typeface style with an extended body, in relation to the ‘normal’ font style. Not to be confused with ‘expanded’ type, which is then a line of type that has been digitally stretched. Describes the weight, width and style of a typeface. A collection of font faces that were designed to be used together may be referred to as a font family. Glyphs Term for describing the shape and style of a single type character. For example, an italic letter ‘a’ and a roman letter ‘a’ are two different glyphs of the same character. Greeking The use of nonsense or dummy text, instead of the real body copy. This is done by designers to the give the page an overall grey, or flat appearance, so as not to distract from the design layout. Is the term applied to the spacing between lines of text. It is called leading due to the fact that, in the days of hot-metal typesetting, strips of lead were used to enlarge the space between lines of type. Two or more characters combined to form a single character or glyph, for example the lowercase ‘f’ and ‘l’. Margins The margin is the blank area of the page, outside the type area. Monospaced fonts Typeface where each character has the same width and spacing. Often used for fonts that will only be used for on-screen display. Opentype Is a cross-platform font technology developed jointly by microsoft and adobe and is based on postscript type 1 and truetype fonts. Orphan Occurs when the first line of a new paragraph starts at bottom of a page. This is generally seen as extremely bad typographic practice. Pica Superscript Much smaller character than the line it appears on and above the y height. Swash Decorative letterforms, generally used for headings os as initial caps. Unit of measurement equivalent to 4.216 mm. Point A point is the smallest of the typographical measuring units. 1 point equals 0.351 mm. There are 12 points in a pica. The point system is the most common form of measurement for setting type. Font sizes and line spaces (leading) are nearly always specified in points. The size of a font is measures from the top of the ascender to the bottom of the descender. Printer fonts Postscript fonts are made up of two separate files. The display or bitmap fonts, that are used purely for onscreen display and the printer fonts. Printer fonts contain high quality vector information and are sent to the printer to reproduce a quality printout. Roman Differentiates ‘regular’ typefaces from their italic or bold versions. Roman numerals are the numerical figures based on the traditional roman counting forms. Running head Line of type running along the top of every page, above the top margin, in a printed publication. Often made up of the publication’s title or chapter name. Stem The vertical stokes that make up the main part of most characters containing straight lines - the letter ‘o’ does not contain a stem. Small caps Lliterally, small capitals. Typeface style where all the letterforms take the shape of its capital letter. Spine The curved centre of the stroke of the letter ‘s’. Subscript Character which appears lower and much smaller than the main line of text. Often used for chemical symbols. Symbol font Special typeface used for scientific or mathematical formulas. Tracking Similar to kerning, in that it affects the spacing between letters. Reduces the space between two letter-faces individually, tracking affects a whole word, or sentence, depending on how much text is selected to track.Tracking is often used by typesetters to get a line of text to fit. This is known as ‘negative tracking’. Positive tracking letters is generally frowned upon by typesetters. Truetype fonts Like postscript type 1 fonts, truetype fonts are scaleable to any size without a loss of quality. Unlike postscript fonts, they contain all their information – bitmap and vector - within one digital file. Type 1 font Postscript rendered vector typefaces, that allow the typefaces to be enlarged to any size without loss of quality, either on screen or when printed. Type style A style of a typeface, such as italic or bold. Typefaces A typeface is the design of an alphabet. Literally the shape, look and feel of the letters. Typography The study, design and usage of fonts and typefaces. At one point, before digital type, a typographer was a specialist in the field of designing and setting type. With the advent of the digital age, every graphic designer should be able to call themselves a typographer to some degree. Uppercase Simply refers to the capital letters of a font. Versal The large upercase initial capital letter in a paragraph of text. Almost always this is placed in the first paragraph of a chapter. Often these initial letters are decorated, but versal can also refer to a simple upper case inital letter, such as a drop cap Weight The thickness or heaviness of the strokes of a font style. Font weights generally range from ‘light’, on to ‘medium’ and then through to ‘heavy’. With the advent of digital fonts technology, there are now more choices of font weights than ever. Widow Occurs when the last line of a paragraph from the previous page flows onto the top of the next page. Generally seen as bad typographic practice. X-height The x-height of a font is the distance between the baseline of a line of type and the top of the main part of the lower-case letter-faces - apart from the ascenders and descenders. The letter ‘x’ is obviously used as prime example.
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