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font or fount?

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font or fount?

Postby William Hupy » Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:51 am

Which is correct and how are they different from typeface?
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Re: font or fount?

Postby Perry Lassiter » Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:35 pm

Wondered that myself also. I do know typeface seldom squirts you as do water fonts or founts or fountains sometimes do.
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Re: font or fount?

Postby gailr » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:51 pm

They spring from the same source:
fountain
fount
font (as in baptismal)

Font (as in typesetting) is derived from foundary as metal type was cast -- a step forward from hand-carving movable type from wood blocks! Etymonline expands on that here. Interesting that the two "fonts" are ultimately derived from separate words with similar meanings:
fount: Sanskrit dhanvati "flows, runs"
found: from root *gheu- "to pour"
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Re: font or fount?

Postby Philip Hudson » Mon Apr 22, 2013 1:12 am

To expand on Gail's definitions and Perry's notion that type faces do not squirt themselves: Foundry fonts do "squirt themselves" on the line of type. This is in the form of molten lead being squirted on a line of type font dies. When the lead hardens it becomes a line of type. This carries over into electronically produced type. I believe we discussed in another thread that font and a face are not synonyms in typography. A font, in modern typography, is a set of characters in a specific design and size: e.g. Times New Roman 12 point. A type face is a design without stated size: e.g. Times New Roman. To a typographer, these are important distinctions. I have the honor of being one of the first creators of electronically produced type faces/fonts.
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