Textura

Indices : Blackletter : Textura

A style of Blackletter. Also called Gothic or Gotisch.

By the 1100s, scriptoriums in and around Paris had so altered Carolingian Minuscule that the lettering styles of the day no longer bore any resemblance to those of c.800. This geographic area—Paris and its environs—held the avant garde of the mid-1100s onwards. The 1140s, for instance, saw the creation of the Gothic style of architecture in St. Denis, a Parisian suburb.

The name textura refers to the fabric-like quality of a page set in the script; "textura" literally means "an even effect in weaving." Textura is often said to bear a stylistic similarity to this new style of art and architecture. Together with Gothic art and architecture, Textura spread across Europe, taking hold everywhere except Italy, which did not show much appreciation for the Gothic. Two types of textura flourished simultaneously: Textura Quadrata, which features diamond-shaped heads and feet; and Textura Prescisus, which is characterized by the absence of feet and an even baseline.

By 1400, virtually all books in Europe were written out in Textura hands. When Johann Gutenberg developed movable type, he based his forms on Textura letters.

As printing spread outward from Mainz, the Textura style was quickly abandoned for Schwabacher and Antiqua.

Wynken de Worde brought a Textura font of type to England in 1480. Old English types of the 19th Century are sometimes based on typefaces that developed out of his contribution.

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