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The first Indian-script typeface on the Monotype: a missing chapter in the history of mechanical typecasting

Singh, V. (2018) The first Indian-script typeface on the Monotype: a missing chapter in the history of mechanical typecasting. Journal of the Printing Historical Society, 29. ISSN 0079-5321

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Official URL: http://printinghistoricalsociety.org.uk

Abstract/Summary

In the early decades of the twentieth century imperatives for faster composition and larger circulation of printed matter across the Indian subcontinent came to the fore with the rise of nationalism, the Indian independence movement, and the politics of language and script that emerged alongside. With limited recourse to technical know-how, colonial printing establishments responded by approaching manufacturers who could undertake the requisite technical experimentation for mechanical composition. The London-based Monotype Corporationis credited with the earliest development of a Devanagari-script typeface for its hot-metal machines. It has so far been thought that this development took place in the 1930s and that it was the first of its kind. This essay uncovers and examines evidence that situates the first Devanagari typeface on the Monotype machine as a distinct project, starting almost a decade earlier in 1921.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Arts and Communication Design > Typography & Graphic Communication
ID Code:76953
Publisher:Printing Historical Society

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