Times New Roman Variations

joslog's picture

Does anyone know of redesigns or alterations to Times New Roman, especially for display use? Especially interested to know if there is a version with thinner serifs than the standard...

joslog's picture

thanks.... do you know if that was designed by stanley morrison as well?

joseph

dan_reynolds's picture

Tim, you beat me to the post!

Times Eighteen is design for use in 18 pt and up. In comparison with smaller Times sizes, its characters are subtly condensed and the hairlines are finer.

timd's picture

Joseph, as I understand it, it was designed by Morison, however I don’t know the history of it, there is a short blurb with that link.

Dan, early bird :), perhaps you have more definite knowledge about the history?

Tim

dan_reynolds's picture

I do not know much about the history of Times New Roman. There seems to be some dispute about how it was really designed, and how much of a design role Morison really played in it. There were certainly many other people in and out of Monotype who were involved on the periphery, at the very least.

Times, from Linotype, is Times New Roman as it was actually used by the London Times newspaper, if I recall correctly. Monotype made the design, but the newspaper was set using Linotype machines. So Linotype had to adapt the design for its machinery. Since the 1930s, there has been some sort of agreement to its distribution. "Times New Roman" is a Monotype trademark, "Times" a Linotype one.

Walter Tracy, at Linotype's English office, drew Times Europa later, in the 1960s. This was the typeface that replaced Times New Roman/Times at the Times of London then. But even this face is history by now. The Times of London uses yet another face today for its pages.

The Monotype Times New Roman, in metal, was a superb book face. The Encyclopaedia Brittanica is a marvelous example of its possibilities.

William Berkson's picture

The origin of Times New Roman is something of a typographic mystery. What I remember reading:

Version 1. Morrison sketched out key characters and Victor Lardent carried out his instructions (Morrison version).

Version 2. Morrison had the general idea of putting Perpetua style serifs on Monotype Plantin (designed before Morrison's arrival at Monotype.) But the whole execution of the concept was Lardent's. (Revisionist version by those who did new edition of Morrison's essays.)

Version 3: It was originally drawn by an American, Starling Burgess, and this fact was covered up. --Mike Parker's version in Printing History 31/32 (1994), pp. 52–108. Mike Parker was typography manager at Merganthaler Linotype and then founder of Bitstream. I believe he mentions the issue in his interview at www.typeradio.org/loudblog/. I see he will be at TypeCon, so if you are attending you can ask him further yourself.

Stephen Coles's picture

I see [Mike Parker] will be at TypeCon, so if you are attending you can ask him further yourself.

Highly recommended, but be prepared. Give yourself an hour or two. The story is fascinating, but can't be made short.

Tim Ahrens's picture

You will find a whole chapter on the history of Times New Roman in
Walter Tracy's Letters of Credit.
There is a lot of information about variations for different sizes and the question who actually designed them.

geraintf's picture

Parker's theory is put forward in 'Starling Burgess, Type Designer', Printing History 31/32 (1994): 52-108

Michael Hernan's picture

The controversy does not end there...

http://www.ismennt.is/not/briem/text/1/12/12.7.btim.html

As Gunnlaugur SE Briem's letter to the editor suggests, authorship and involvement in Times seems to be a slippery practice.

Was Morison involved in witchcraft? [wit]

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