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We have a significant service coming up at the (Church of England) church I go to in London--the Bishop is coming to dedicate a newly painted icon. It is a black madonna, given in memory of a 16 year old victim of a shooting. I think it warrants special thought about the design of the service book, and I am considering getting a new typeface specifically for it.
The core requirements are:
(1) Economical, especially in horizontal space consumption. Because prayers are set like verse, one wants to avoid turnover lines, and a slightly condensed type does that.
(2) A good legible bold because prayers the congregation says are set in bold. It needs to be easily distinguishable from the normal weight, but also easy to read.
(3) A self-effacing italic, because italic is used for rubrics which are not particularly important.
(4) A low cap-height because prayers are full of capital letters scattered mid-sentence (God, Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit, Father, Son, Lord etc ...) and one wants to minimize the ugliness.
(5) A good plain text face -- nothing sentimental or churchy in either the Victorian (Ye Gothicke) or modern (sentimental calligraphic) veins.
I saw Arnhem in Kinross's Unjustified Texts, and thought that it might work. But it's expensive enough that I don't want to make a mistake. Does anyone have any experience of using it? Would it fit the bill.
(PS: The CofE itself used to use Palatino, and currently uses Gill Sans. I have used both Ehrhardt and Galliard in the past. Orthodoxy for home-produced services is either Arial (they think it's Gill) or Comic Sans (cos it's "friendly", of course), but I'm a heretic.)