Giambattista Bodoni

(redirected from GB Bodoni)

Bodoni, Giambattista

(jämbät-tē`stä bōdō`nē), 1740–1813, Italian printer b. Piedmont. He was the son of a printer and worked for a time at the press of the Vatican. Under the patronage of the duke of Parma, he produced stately quartos and folios with impressive title pages and luxurious margins. With BaskervilleBaskerville, John
, 1706–75, English designer of type and printer. He and Caslon were the two great type designers of the 18th cent. in England. He began his work as printer and publisher in 1757 and in 1758 became printer to the Univ. of Cambridge.
..... Click the link for more information.
 in England and the DidotDidot, François
, 1689–1757, Parisian printer. The son of a printer, Denis Didot, he was the first of the family to win fame in his craft. His son, François Ambroise Didot,
..... Click the link for more information.
 family in France, Bodoni was a leader in originating pseudoclassical typefaces. These were distinguished from the "old style" of CaslonCaslon, William
, 1692–1766, English type designer, b. Worcestershire. He worked first in London as an engraver of gunlocks, then set up his own foundry in 1716. The merits of Caslon's types were rediscovered after a brief eclipse in the popularity of John Baskerville's
..... Click the link for more information.
 by emphasizing the contrast of light and heavy lines and by long, level serifs. Bodoni's most notable publications include folio editions of Horace (1791), Vergil (1793), The Divine Comedy (1795), and Homer (1808). His coldly elegant books were frankly made to be admired for typeface and layout, not to be studied or read. He was apparently indifferent to the quality of the text he printed and to editing and proofreading. William Morris considered Bodoni's mechanical perfection in typography the ultimate example of modern ugliness.