4367Re: [PPLetterpress] Re: What's the point?
- Jun 23, 2005Gerald,
The information in the link is interesting, but by no means accurate
Fournier based his system on the Paris Foot, Didot on the Kings-foot.
And because Kings live on bigger feet, than their subjects... the paris foot
is 11/12 part of the Kings foot.
That's why Didot is a little bit bigger.
Paper will shrink, when you wet it before printing, and in a time that all
paper was watted, its obvious that you cannot use the paper as a reference.
All towns in ancient France had their different measurement standards, and
this had a devasting effect on commerce. For this very reason the French
goverment (the Court in those days, and long before Napoleon Bonaparte)
decided, to standardize.
Point-sizes differed if you bought your type in Marseille or in Paris, or
any other big
town, although the underlaying system was equal... 1/6 of a foot = 1 thumb
= 6 cicero = 72 point
Even there is that link inaccurate in their info.
The English inch however is not body based at all, but based on the
measurement of 3 corns of rye.
The Didot system was implemented by demanding that all printing made for
should be printed in Didot sizes.
And the Didot-system was carried througout mainland Europe by the conquest of
This was not the end of Fournier, by no means, lots of printshops kept
their old material
and typefounders were willing to cast Fournier based type. Monotype England
made Fournier based moulds, I have a few of them, one 14 point... almost 13
but not quite...
There was not one French Inch, each town in France had its own body based
in the middle ages, and those standards survived long times.
The Fournier-system has been used in pintshops until the very end of commercial
letterpress (somewhere 1980)....
At 06:13 24-06-2005, you wrote:
>CaroleLetter-press & Typefounding, Monotype-composition
>Don't know if this will answer your question but its an interesting read.
>Somewhere or other I read a long long discourse about the magic of the
>number 72, mathematically. Something about its divisibility which made
>it appropriate in the printing industry, and then as used digitally.
>Apparently 72 was used in the computer industry based on traditional
>grounds, and somewhat unfortunately, in regard to screen resolution.
>As I recall NeXT computer (late 80s/early 90s)) used Display
>PostScript, which did not conform to the standard (I think). Though
>the current Mac OSX incorporates a lot of the technical developments
>associated with the NeXT, including Display PostScript, it's not
>exactly the same thing.
>--- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Carole Aldrich
> > All my traditional pica rulers always read 6 picas per inch, 12
> > points/pica, 72 points/inch. I have heard the traditional vs postcript
> > dialogue for quite some time. How is this not reflected on our old pica
> > rulers? Does anyone know?
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