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The Iliad of Homer, The University of Chicago Press

Contributed by Dan Reynolds on Mar 20th, 2017. Artwork published in
circa 1961
The Iliad of Homer, The University of Chicago Press
License: All Rights Reserved.

This paperback edition of Richmond Lattimore’s translation of the Iliad was published by the University of Chicago Press in 1961 (the book’s hardcover edition had been published ten years earlier). The paperback’s interior pages don’t match the cover’s design exactly—those seem to me to be set in Monotype Bembo. Unfortunately no designers are credited within the book, either for the shape of the text or the design of the cover.

On this cover design, the words “Iliad,” “Homer,” and “Richmond Lattimore” are set with Michelangelo. Note the alternate ‘R’. The italic used for the smaller lines of text reading “Translated and with an Introduction by” have some details in common with Monotype’s Arrighi Italic (i.e., Centaur Italic), like the long ascenders or the ‘y’. Judging from ‘w’ and ‘a’, though, it is probably Cancelleresca Bastarda, designed by Jan van Krimpen for Enschedé.

This 1961 paperback would seem to be a relatively-early example of Michelangelo in-use by a client in the United States. The titling face Michelangelo was designed by Hermann Zapf to match his Palatino typeface, at the D. Stempel AG typefoundry of Frankfurt am Main (West Germany).


  • Michelangelo
  • Cancelleresca Bastarda
  • Bembo




Artwork location

4 Comments on “The Iliad of Homer, The University of Chicago Press”

  1. Considering the incredible amount of work put into Cancelleresca Bastarda, it’s really sad how little use it’s had. I’m glad to see it got even a little bit of love here.

    The only really extensive user of it I know of is Stanbrook Abbey Press, a private artistic press owned by an English Catholic nunnery. This article on their work (also: bonus awful joke-sorry) could be a Fonts in Use post in itself.

  2. Jared Carter says:
    May 23rd, 2018 11:47 pm

    As the cover image shows, the translator’s first name was “Richmond,” not “Richard,” as your article has it.

  3. Thanks, Jared! It’s fixed now.

  4. Ezra Fike has kindly shared additional images of this book, from his collection of “mid-century books with excellent design.”

    The back cover includes design credits. I’m happy to add Sue Allen as the designer of this cover. The blurbs appear to be set in Bembo.

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