As a child I wondered why the teacher asked us to draw the letter a as an o with a tail, when, in my books, the letter a was printed with a ‘fringe’ or an extra bit at the top. This site aims to make the subject more accessible, to bring the study of typography and type history to as big an audience as possible. It’s just about impossible to imagine a world without type, but at the same time type’s ubiquity has most of us taking it for granted. So take a closer look; learn where our letters originated, read about the history of typography; and, if you’re in a hurry, you might enjoy my new series called 5-Minute Books
Who are you?
British European-born writer living in Japan a small wooden cabin, in a forest, in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. Why Japan? Vietnam? Not sure really, but I’m happy here.
If you love typography, then you’ll enjoy my new book, Typographic Firsts: Adventures in Early Printing, published by Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford.
I’m now working on two other books: Remarkable Renaissance Books (for Bodleian), and Heavens Printed (in search of a publisher), a beautifully illustrated book about early printed works on astronomy and cosmology.
I have intentionally omitted my entire life history. However, if you have a predilection for the soporific and you’d like to know more about me, then email me at johno at this domain. If you have questions concerning the meaning of life, quantum mechanics or string theory, then I suggest you Google it.