Garalde: the word itself sounds antique and arcane to anyone who isn’t fresh out of design school, but the sort of typeface it describes is actually quite familiar to all of us. Despite its age—born fairly early in printing’s history—the style has fared well; Garaldes are still the typefaces of choice for books and other long reading. And so we continue to see text set in old favorites—Garamond, Sabon,® and their Venetian predecessor, Bembo.® Yet many new books don’t feel as handsome and readable as older books printed in the original, metal type. The problem is that digital type revivals are typically facsimiles of their metal predecessors, merely duplicating the letterforms rather than capturing the impression—both physical and emotional—that the typefaces once left on the page.
MVB Verdigris is a Garalde text family for the digital age. Inspired by work of 16th-century punchcutters Robert Granjon, Hendrik van den Keere, and Pierre Haultin, MVB Verdigris celebrates tradition but is not beholden to it. Originally created to deliver good typographic color as text, Mark van Bronkhorst’s updated design meets the needs of today’s designer using today’s paper and press. Now a full-featured OpenType release with an added titling companion, it’s optimized for the latest typesetting technologies too.
With MVB Verdigris Pro, Van Bronkhorst has revisited the family, adding small caps to all weights and styles, extensive language support, and other typographic refinements. Among the features:
• Support for most Latin-based languages, including those of Central and Eastern Europe.
• Precision spacing and kerning by type editor Linnea Lundquist. The fonts practically set beautiful text by themselves.
• Proportional and tabular figure sets, each with oldstyle and lining forms with currency symbols to match.
• Ligatures to maintain even spacing while accommodating Verdigris’ elegant, sweeping glyphs.
• Numerators and denominators for automatic fractions of any denomination.
• Useful, straightforward dingbats including arrows, checkboxes, and square and round bullets in three sizes.
• Alternative ‘zero’ and ‘one’ oldstyle figures for those who prefer more contemporary versions over the traditional forms.
• An alternative uppercase Q with a more reserved tail.
• An optional, roman “Caps” font providing mid-caps, useful for titling settings, and for those situations when caps seem too big and small caps seem to small.
• Two “Big” weights designed for headings and titles.