Haultin's Augustine

Have an happy new year 2020 !
I began my work on Haultin's Augustine some weeks ago and it begins to be interesting. The lower cases are the most advanced and capitals remain a work in progress. My goal is to produce a very readable typeface at the size of pocket books, and which is space efficient. Meanwhile I would draw something with some softness and a fairly velvety texture.



  • Nice! The vertical alignments vary quite a bit (/a is very tall, bowls of /b/d/p/q are small, etc.) but I think that lends softness and a letterpressed quality. /f_/egrave needs fixing. /x feels upside down to me, and hyphen feels too low. I like the thickening into the ascender serifs; hood of /f could likewise be more substantial. /t could have a little more above the crossbar and/or at the outstroke. 
  • That is absolutely gorgeous.
  • Very pretty overall! I find the monolinearity of the bowl of /g/ a bit uncanny, though. And the /n/ and especially /u/ are very narrow, but I suppose that's part of the intended style.
  • Thanks a lot for your comments ! @Craig Eliason yes the vertical alignments variability is intentional and based on what I saw repeatingly on the printed material , however I have reduced a little bit some non useful differences. About small /d bowl it was a very common feature for more than a century from Jenson and Griffo up to Garamont. I experienced that it clearly plays an important role in readability. But Haultin has extended it to /p here and, less significantly, to /b and /q while the /o is much bigger. Seemingly He clearly understood how to optimize readability at small sizes, which were his specialty. /f_/egrave was puzzling me indeed because I strictly respected the inclination and positioning of the grave accent ! I even have thought at drawing a ligature (I am not the first one to do that) and I have no solution at this stage. I will take a look at /x and you are probably right about hyphen, particularly when used as the minus. @Simon Cozens Thanks, you are too kind ;)@Christian Thalmann I will see what I can do fot /g while /u and /n have the exact width that Haultin designed, amongst other features, to optimize this small sized typeface.
  • Not only is this excellent work (bravo!), I think it sets an important example: that designing a type for small text by beginning with a small model, rather than scaling down a larger one, yields results that work perfectly for their purpose. I am truly impressed! Please let me know if you make this available. As I’m sure you know, Haultin cut a beautiful petit-texte italic and a petit-texte Greek with an extravagant set of ligatures. I hope you’ll consider making similar types to fill out the family.

  • @Scott-Martin Kosofsky Thank you so much for your so kind encouragements ! I have no experience in drawing Greek characters, but of course I could take a look at what Haultin did ! Soon I will search for a small size italic by Haultin or Granjon (The latter did so fantastic things in this area).
  • Soon I will search for a small size italic by Haultin or Granjon
    You can find them in Verliet’s French Renaissance Printing Types: A Conspectus. The reproduction quality isn’t great but it’s a lot cheaper than traveling to the relevant museums!
  • @James Puckett Thanks a lot for this reference ! On the other hand fortunately I am not so far from Plantin Museum ! And I am sure that our Royal Library in Brussels has a lot of old treasures !
  • I forgot : many thanks too to @Juanjo López who provided me helpful material at the first step of this project ! And a very happy new Year to everybody on this forum !
  • Great work, this is beautiful!
  • Thank you @Jani Paavola !
  • Wonderful. You maintain a good balancing of all the oddities which make this face look warm and sympathetic.
    (BTW, hyphen ought not to be taken as minus!)

    Bonne année! to you all.
  • @Andreas Stötzner Thank you so much for your compliment. And of course hyphen should not be used as a minus !
  • ... but it will be. And for endash too. 
  • @Craig Eliason Of course you are right : lambda user will do this way. And I consider lambda user too because already when I was a lambda user I was in love with typefaces :-)
  • Hi, at the moment I am testing a lighter version of Gustine with shorter verticals suited for narrower interlines. The width is slightly narrower to match even better the original width of Haultin's font that I had partly lost .
    Enjoy !

  • Lovely! Does the mostly monoline top bowl of the /g and the ear that is somewhat thick at the point of attachment make the upper right of that letter a little clotted? Is the topheavy tapering of lowercase el a touch too exaggerated (i.e. its waist might be a teensy bit too thin)? 
    But more importantly: What's driving the lightening of the weight? 
  • @Craig Eliason Thanks for your comments ! I will see what could be done to ameliorate /g. Do you mean /l in your second comment ? Yes it could be better.
    I use FontForge automatic features with some adjustments afterwards (for example widening too thin lines) to drive the lightening. It's not easy to manage at the beginning but it works fairly well on this kind of font. And in the particular case of Haultin's Augustine it has preserved its soul.

  • Craig EliasonCraig Eliason Posts: 1,398
    edited November 2020
    Sorry, I meant what is motivating it, not how was it achieved. Why did you decide it should be lighter?
  • It's only an option. I decided to try it after my first printing tests some weeks ago. Of course I keep the regular one too. At the moment the only difference between the regular form and my first version is that it's slightly narrower. In fact it became insensibly wider through my design process, I didn't see it and thus I corrected it because my goal was a compact Garalde. But todays light and regular versions share the same width. On the other hand I keep also versions with the original length of ascending and descending.

  • Rafael SaraivaRafael Saraiva Posts: 30
    edited January 2021
    Hi Ivan, great job! It has a really nice texture at small sizes. Where did you find the source material for Haultin's Augustine?  
  • @Rafael Saraiva Thanks a lot ! The first time I saw Haultin Augustine was on a small ancient sample text at the students exhibition in Plantin Museum in Antwerpen two years ago. I did some bad photographs and @Juanjo López kindly posted a better version of this sample on this post : https://typedrawers.com/discussion/3405/augustine-in-plantins-museum#latest

  • @ivan louette

    Thanks so much for sharing this. I'm doing the EcTd this year and at the moment I'm investigating Haultin's Non-Pareille and Coronelle (very small point sizes). I wasn't aware about the Augustine in the Museum collection though, that's great news.
  • @Rafael Saraiva With pleasure ! By the way if you find some small point size italics documents from Haultin I would be very interested because I would add a decent italic to my Gustine.
  • @ivan louette sure thing, please find attached some pictures from his Cicéro Italic (1549). This reproduction is not very good (bitmap) and comes from The Palaeotypography of the French Renaissance. I let you know if I find better source material. In the meantime, I'm calling @Alvaro Franca also a member of the forum and former EcTd student. I'm aware that he worked on Haultin's Augustine Non-Pareille Cursive (circa 6 pt).
  • @Rafael Saraiva Wow ! Thanks a lot ! This document is already much better than what I have at my disposal at the moment. And despite its greater point size it could be an interesting start and could probably easily be adapted as an italic for my lighter forms of Gustine (Augustine). Until now I saw also some compact, and slightly slanted too, Granjon's italics, but this one has something lovely roundish. Thanks again !
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