THE ORIGIN OF THE SERIF (Brush Writing & Roman Letters) - The Serif is the short cross stroke at the beginning and end of letter parts. Its origin in Roman inscription letters is one of the uncharted areas of paleography. In this book the author questions accepted theories as to the serif's origin, and his own theory with skillful reasoning, detailed illustration, and epigraphic proof.
DUST JACKET DESIGN - The large, finished (orange), and brush-written (green) R's on the dust jacket are intended to to indicate the process by which the gIyptic. Imperial majuscule (littera monumentalis arose out of the ancient, brushwritten, display letter (littera actuaria). The symbolism is further accentuated by the green; and orange colour, suggesting both the early and the mature fruit.
TO THE READER - Demand for copies of The Origin of the Serif has been constant since Fr. Catich published it in 1968. The information found there is not available elsewhere, and Catich's theory on serif origins is not only original but persuasive. He connects it with a development of the Roman alphabet. Since the edition has been exhausted, Mary W. Gilroy, the Curator of the Catich Gallery, has prepared this new edition for publication.
The Catich Gallery was established in 1985 to commemorate the contribution of a great and original artist who taught at St. Ambrcrse from 1939 until his death in 1979. So far as is known, it is the only Gallerv to concentrate on calligraphy, related arts and skills, and E. M. Catich work.
"This book is upsetting. It is intended to be. Father Catich has unusual powers of observation, analysis and synthesis. He has had years of shop experience in brush writing and stone cutting. He is a callig¬rapher with astonishing skill in the handling of all types of brushes and pens. As a research scholar he has spent years of work in Italy, as well as in Greece, and has returned many times to the primary sources for further investigations. He possesses an even rarer ability. Like Ruskin and Morris before him he is able to enter into the lives of ancient craftsmen; rediscovering in his own mind and body the secrets of their art, and, as Edward Johnston put it, `...tracing in (his) own experience... a process resembling its past development'."
Prof. Lloyd Reynolds Chairman, Art Department Reed College, Portland, Oregon
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