Wm. Carlos Williams (1923)

Greenpig's picture

I'm trying to identify the type used in the first printing of William Carlos Williams's Spring and All, published in 1923 by the Contact Press.

Title page

Body type

Thanks for your help.

Trevor Baum's picture

The body type looks like Baskerville to me.

Greenpig's picture

No, it's not Baskerville. It's some kind of a Didone face: note the unbracketed serifs, and the tall, angled stem of the t, and the curvy leg of the R.

The capitals are quite wide, while the lower-case is relatively narrow. It looks like a cross between a Bodoni (C with two spurs, R, t) and a Century (splayed serifs at the top of T, J and K [not shown in this sample], y).

Trevor Baum's picture

You're right Greenpig, I glanced at it too quickly!

The title I believe is set in either Janson 56 Italic, Archetype Italic or Bell MT Italic.

I'll get back to you on that tricky body text.

Atwe's picture

I think it may be Fridericus Antiqua, still available from some metal type foundries, here is a link to a catalogue; the quality is not that good so I may be mistaken...

Greenpig's picture

Thanks, Atwe. That's a font I've never heard of, but I think you're right. The cut is slightly different -- the capitals in the catalog aren't the extra-wide ones in the book text -- but the general letterforms are right on. Thanks for digging up this obscure face. I'll have to do some research on it.

Greenpig's picture

I'm now pretty sure the body face is "French Round Face," which I found in Rookledge. Undigitized, alas.

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