Letterforms

Divina proportione.

Pacioli, Luca.

Divina proportione. — Venice: A. Paganius Paganinus, 1509.

This work by Italian friar and mathematician Luca Pacioli (1445–1517) on the application of the “golden mean” or “divine proportion” to the arts includes a section with geometrical formulae for drawing roman letters. These are very similar to the numerous studies of human proportions found in the sketchbooks of Leonardo da Vinci, and the two are known to have met.

Gift of Richard Hoe Lawrence.

Fra Luca de Pacioli of Borgo S. Sepolcro.

Morison, Stanley.

Fra Luca de Pacioli of Borgo S. Sepolcro. — New York: The Grolier Club, 1933.

Bruce Rogers (1870–1957) designed Stanley Morison’s edition of Pacioli’s work, which was printed for the Grolier Club at the Cambridge University Press and issued in an edition of 390 copies. This copy was bound in 1982 by Canadian bookbinder Michael Wilcox in dark blue morocco, inlaid with red letterforms and green and blue circles.

Geoffroy Tory

Champ fleury.

Tory, Geoffroy.

Champ fleury. — Paris: Geof-froy Tory, 1529.

French bookseller, engraver, and printer Geoffroy Tory (ca. 1480–1533) studied at the universities of Rome and Bologna, where he developed an appreciation for the roman letterforms of the Italian Renaissance. In Champ fleury,Tory discusses the history of roman letterforms, and compares their proportions with the ideals of the human face and figure.

Purchased by Council order in 1889 for $50.

Champ fleury: translated into English and annotated by George B. Ives [design mockup].

Tory, Geoffroy.

Champ fleury: translated into English and annotated by George B. Ives [design mockup]. — New York: The Grolier Club, 1927.

Like so many other Grolier Club publications of the period, this edition of Champ fleury was designed by Bruce Rogers; it was printed by William Edwin Rudge (1876–1931) of New York. Rogers redrew illustrations and diagrams from Tory’s work using photographic enlargements of the originals, and set the text in his elegant Centaur type. Shown here is Rogers’ own design mockup, with numerous proofs, drawings, layout designs, and annotations; it is inscribed on the flyleaf by Rogers to the Grolier Club and dated March 15, 1928. 

Gift of Bruce Rogers, 1928.