TYPE DESIGN INFORMATION PAGE last updated on Wed May 22 08:50:14 EDT 2019






Robert Granjon [Jacques de Sanlecque the elder]

Born in Rome, Robert Granjon (1513-1589) worked for various printers in Lyon, Paris, Frankfurt, Antwerp, and Rome. In Lyon, he was active as librarian, printer, and engraver of typefaces. Granjon's designs live on in the balanced Plantin family, designed by Frank Hinman Pierpont in 1913 at Monotype, and available at Linotype (and elsewhere).

The Gothic italic typeface Civilité (1566; some say 1557) is also due to him. The first book in this typeface was Dialogue de la vie et de la mort by Ringhieri (1557). The first modern metal version of Civilité is due to Morris Fuller Benton (1922, ATF). Among the digital versions, Ralph M. Unger's Civilité (Profonts / URW++) is noteworthy.

W.A. Dwiggins' Eldorado (1953) was based on an early roman lowercase of Granjon. Font Bureau's Eldorado (1993-1994), developed by David Berlow, Jane Patterson, Tobias Frere-Jones and Tom Rickner for Premiere Magazine, was a far-reaching extension of that.

Brigitte Schuster did a revival of Monotype Plantin at KABK in 2010.

In 1578, he moved to Rome, where he worked on types for Oriental characters needed by the Catholic missionaries: Armenian (1579), Syriac (1580), Cyrillic (1582), and Arabic (1580-1586). He collaborated with Giambattista Raimondi, the scientific director of the Stamperia Medicea Orientale, and Domenico Basa, the technical director of the Stamperia Vaticana, and contributed the earliest printed editions in certain Oriental languages. He also created a Greek typeface, Parangonne Grecque.

The Linotype Granjon typeface designed by George W. Jones in 1928 is a Garamond though---Jones used Granjon's work as a model for his italic---, and the name seems to suggest that Granjon created the model for this garamond, which is not the case. Image of Linotype's Granjon. For related typefaces, see ITC Galliard (1978, Matthew Carter).

References include Maurits Sabbe and Marius Audin: Die Civilité-Schriften des Robert Granjon in Lyon: und die flämischen Drucker des 16. Jahrhunderts. [This is Vol. 3 of Bibliotheca Typographica, 1929].

Images of digital typefaces that descend from Granjon's work.

FontShop link. Klingspor link.

Robert Granjon
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Type designers ⦿ Type designers ⦿ History of type ⦿ Type design in Italy ⦿ Type design in France ⦿ Civilité ⦿ Garalde or Garamond typefaces ⦿

file name: Robert Granjon Ex Libris 1557

file name: Robert Granjon French Civilite 1566

file name: Ralph M Unger Profonts Civilite 2005

file name: Ralph M Unger Profonts Civilite 2005b

file name: Ralph M Unger Civilite

file name: Ralph M Unger Civilite

file name: Granjon Saint Augustin 1580

file name: Granjon Gros Cicero 1569

file name: Granjon First Italic 1543

file name: Granjon Italique Petit Romain 1543

file name: Monotype Plantin110 Monotype Plantin113

file name: Robert Granjon Parangonne Cursive 1555

file name: George William Jones Chauncey H. Griffith Linotype Granjon 1928 1930

file name: Robert Granjon Dialogue De La Vie Et De La Mort 1557

file name: Robert Granjon Dialogue De La Vie Et De La Mort 1557b

file name: Matthew Carter I T C Galliard 1978

file name: Matthew Carter I T C Galliard Italic 1978

Luc Devroye ⦿ School of Computer Science ⦿ McGill University Montreal, Canada H3A 2K6 ⦿ lucdevroye@gmail.com ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org/fonts.html