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William Caslon

Updated on December 1, 2016

William Caslon was an English type designer. Born Cradley, Worcestershire, England, 1692. Died London, England, January 23, 1766. Caslon designed several typefaces which are still used extensively by printers. By minimizing the decorative aspects of older type styles, he developed sharp and distinct letters which result in a highly legible printed page. Caslon's typefaces, now known as old style, were replaced during the 19th century by so-called modern types but were later revived in the 20th century. Their current popularity is indicated by the familiar printer's maxim: "When in doubt, use Caslon." After working as an engraver and tool cutter, Caslon set up his own typefoundry in London. He supplied types to leading printers in England and Europe. The reputation of the firm was maintained after Caslon's death by his son, William.


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