a^A CAclQaaQ QbcdefqhijK I mnpqrstuvw xqzag dd In classic times capital letters the only letters in use were drawn with a slate pencil and incised with a chisel. No doubt their form was intimately associated with these tools. Lower case developed in the early Middle Ages from the use of the pen, and therefore inherits the characteristics of handwriting. Later, both alphabets adapted themselves, and we observe in all types up to the present the characteristic basic element of the thin up-stroke and the thick down-stroke. These characteristics have preserved themselves up to this day. But do we need such a pretence of precedent at a time when 90 per cent, of all that is read is either written on a typewriter or printed on a printing press, when handwriting plays only such a secondary role, and when type could be much simpler and more con sistent in form. Hence the requirements of a new alphabet are as follows: Geometric foundation of each letter, resulting in a syn thetic construction out of a few basic elements. Avoid ance of all suggestion of a hand-written character. Even thickness of all parts of the letter, and renumera- tion of all suggestions of up and down strokes. Simplification of form for the sake of legibility the simpler the optical appearance the easier the compre hension). A basic form which will suffice for diverse applications so that the same character is adaptable for various functions printing, typewriting, hand and stencil writing, etc. These considerations will explain the following attempt to design a new type. IIrdba development oe the form of the letter "a" 1Greek Alpha 2. Roman 3. and 4. Rower case of the time of Charlemagne 5. "a" in the Grotesque of to-day, a reintroduction of the pure form 6. First reduction, a conservation of the character of handwriting 7. Most exact form 8. Latest Development Universal type, Herbert Bayer, 1925 improved 1928. obcdefqhi jKlmnopqr s tuvwxuz a dd universal type, Herbert Bayer. Bold Wide. Characters at foot show Bold, Medium and Light weights. universal type, Herbert Bayer. Condensed Bold. Characters at end of bottom line show Medium and Light weights. The few basic elements from which the type is built upVertical, 242 Horizontal, a few Arcs, three Angles.

Industrial Arts en | 1936 | | page 82