Accessibility navigation

The early typographic representation of the Persian language

Izadpanah, B. ORCID: (2021) The early typographic representation of the Persian language. PhD thesis, University of Reading

[img] Text - Thesis
· Restricted to Repository staff only
· The Copyright of this document has not been checked yet. This may affect its availability.

[img] Text - Thesis Deposit Form
· Restricted to Repository staff only


It is advisable to refer to the publisher's version if you intend to cite from this work. See Guidance on citing.

To link to this item DOI: 10.48683/1926.00110763


This thesis explores the early typographic representation of the Persian language, written with the modified Arabic script, in the period from its inception in the 1590s in Europe, 1778 in India, 1742 in the Ottoman Empire and 1818 in Iran. It investigates various circumstances that have affected the textual identity of the Persian language including the impact of printing technologies and the roles that the Persian language has played in different communities. During the period under investigation, Persian was cultivated as a missionary and scholarly subject by European orientalists, as the language of ruling minority in India, and as the official language in Iran. Persian literature also played a significant role in the Ottoman lands, which instigated printing and publishing activities beyond these borders that persisted despite the political and social changes in the twentieth century. This research combines the analysis of printed letterforms and knowledge of writing styles with considerations regarding the contexts in which Persian texts were printed. The examination of the visual aspects of Persian publications is informed by important factors such as their intended audience and the often-unconventional approach of printers and typefounders. The thesis provides an original contribution to the field of Persian printing history by means of extensive archival research and a critical review of primary and secondary sources. It draws on insufficiently scrutinised archives and often overlooked primary materials, and pays attention to the lesser-known non-European sources. It interrogates established narratives, and therefore offers a more accurate account of the significant typographic development of the Persian language from the sixteenth to the late nineteenth centuries that has remained largely undocumented. This study’s findings regarding the significant developments in the history of Persian language printing and typefounding are informed by other important initiatives in the history of Arabic-script printing. It brings to light rare publications and printed matter which have not been previously discussed in the fields of typographic or print history. This thesis is supported by high-resolution images which include those of rare printed and manuscript items that have been instrumental in providing new insights into the evolution of printed Persian text, particularly with movable type.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Supervisor:Ross, F. and Leonidas, G.
Thesis/Report Department:School of Arts & Communication Design
Identification Number/DOI:
Divisions:Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Arts and Communication Design > Typography & Graphic Communication
ID Code:110763

University Staff: Request a correction | Centaur Editors: Update this record

Page navigation