Help! when was the diacritic "ç" first cast in metal types?

faraqat's picture

Dear all,
I tried to find related topics around here, but found none... :(
Does anyone know (or provide links to) information about when was the diacritic "ç" first cast in metal types?

Thankyou so much*

Nick Shinn's picture

Why didn't you make your question the title of the thread?

faraqat's picture

I thought it was too long... thanks* ups... now the "ç" doens't appear with Nara! (sorry, i'm not that good with the internet! how can i fix it?)

raph's picture

Earliest one I was able to find was 1558, in Gabriel Simeoni, Illustrations des Epitaphes, printed by Jean de Tournes in Lyon (reproduced in The Typographic Book 1450-1935, plate 133).

Now the gauntlet is set down, I'm sure somebody will find an even earlier example. I don't think I'm more than a few decades off, though.

Michel Boyer's picture

According to the French wikipedia entry Cédille, Geofroy Tory is the first to have used it in French printing, in 1530, in his pamphlet Le sacre et le coronnement de la Royne, imprime par le commandement du Roy nostre Sire, where he used it only three times, in the words façon, commença and Luçon. According to the same article, the cedilla was first used for printing in Spain and Portugal.

You can see the ç at use here in the 1555 Albi edition of Nostradamus' Centuries (and in subsequent editions, except the 1557 Moscow edition).

Michel

Michel Boyer's picture

I just looked at the digital collection of the Biblioteca nacional de Portugal; their first documents are dated 1500; here is a grab with a c cedilla (in the word faça) from this 1500 printed document

Michel

Michel Boyer's picture

And here is a grab from a book edited by Sevilla Antonio Martinez in 1486 (Spain) obtained by following the link "Historia del Libro" in this web page of the Biblioteca Digital Hispánica

faraqat's picture

Thanks!!
I was aware of the Portuguese examples, it was because of them that I started wondering... The Portuguese printers imported types from Spain, that themselves imported from Germany and France (I suppose...). Portuguese cast no types 'till the XVIII century, but it could have come from any foundry printing in Latin, right? I'm not sure it was cast for Latin, since "ç" origins are gothic and it became part of Latin through the vernacular form... this is where I get lost, when were the first forms of vernacular Latin printed... maybe this is a clue? Weren't the first books in Classic Latin? I don't know enough about Latin to answer this, that's why I searched for help! maybe someone already studied this :)

*I thought that through this example, the "ç", I could relate dates and types to find out where did the types used in Portugal come from originally.

Michel Boyer's picture

According the the chronology that figures in the French wiki article on the cedilla, it is Portuguese and Spanish printers that first "created fonts for the cedilla" and those fonts came to France through Toulouse. The exact statement is "Avant 1500 : les imprimeurs espagnols et portugais créent des fontes d'imprimerie pour la cédille ; ces dernières passent en France par Toulouse." The statement is not documented.

faraqat's picture

"The statement is not documented"... thanks anyway :) I'll keep on looking for more info.

faraqat's picture

Here I found one more portuguese example, of 1495.
Livro de vita Cr[ist]i
it looks similar to the Spanish one...

Michel Boyer's picture

In his introduction to A descriptive catalogue of printing in Spain and Portugal 1501-1520, F.J. Norton writes that for types already used in the fifteenth century, reconstituted alphabets can be found in Haebler (Konrad), Geschichte des spanischen Früdruckes in Stammbäumen, Leipzig, 1923. He refers to the Catalogue of books printed in the XVth century now in the British Museum. Pts 1-X, London, 1908-71. (Part X: Spain, Portugal), for a detailed description of founts as well as useful illustrations.

faraqat's picture

Thank you so much Michel!! This is really helpfull, I'll try find these texts.

Michel Boyer's picture

If you look at incunabila from Italy, the Biblia Latina published in Venice by Franciscus Renner de Heilbronn and Nicolaus de Frankfordia, 1475, contains c cedillas. Here is the character set


and here is a grab from this page.


Michel

faraqat's picture

Thanks Michel, I didn't know that website, it's quite interesting!!

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