Ronaldson Old Style

I came across a monograph on the determination of stellar parallaxes from 1911, and I happened to be favorably impressed by the type in which it was set, shown in this brief extract:
The flamboyant serifs on the upper-case F and L visible in this image leave no doubt about the identity of the typeface; I first went to an old Lanston Monotype specimen, found that it resembled the style 21E, and then looked that up to get the name.
This - along with Binny Old Style, 31E in Lanston Monotype, which is even better - seem to be good answers to the question of what to use if one were sent back to a time when Times Roman did not yet exist, and one wanted a type with similar characteristics of readability.


  • Stephen Coles
    Coincidentally, Canada Type Foundry just released an update to their Ronaldson.
  • John Savard
    John Savard Posts: 1,100
    edited October 2021
    In looking for more information, I learned that ITC Tiffany is considered a "lost" typeface, and it was based on Ronaldson Old Style. But it was a display typeface, so it emphasized the more flamboyant features that Ronaldson had - whereas my preference would be to de-emphasize or remove then, in order to make a general-purpose typeface for body type usage.
    And here's a specimen from the book of MacKellar & Richards:
    as they bought Binny & Ronaldson, this is presumably the original, but as they were one of the firms that merged to form ATF, they, too, would have had this face.