An independent archive of typography.

Begriffe-Lotto game

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Oct 3rd, 2022. Artwork published in
circa 1981
Begriffe-Lotto game 1
Source: se-ha-di. License: All Rights Reserved.

Typographic choices in the GDR were not limited to the typefaces by VEB Typoart. And at the same time, the designs by the state-owned foundry were omnipresent in East Germany.

This game for pre-school children is a good example for that. The name, Begriffe-Lotto, is rendered in caps from Cut-In. The monolinear geometric sans with rounded terminals was drawn by Australian designer Maurice Schlesinger and issued by Letraset, the British manufacturer of dry transfer lettering products, around 1973. It somehow found its way across the Iron Curtain, and is used here with custom ligatures for FF and TT and a modified R (cf. the original glyph). A modern display style for a colorful packaging design!

The accompanying leaflet, in contrast, is letterpress printed, in a single color. Text is set in a typeface that was already more than half a century old at the time: Thannhaeuser-Schrift. This contrasted sans with wide proportions and a small x-height was conceived by Herbert Thannhaeuser and first cast by Schriftguss in 1929. In 1951, the Dresden-based company was merged with other East-German foundries into Typoart, where Thannhaeuser-Schrift was continued to be cast.

Begriffe-Lotto came in two versions. Number 1 was produced by VEB Plasticart Annaberg-Buchholz. The more extensive number 2 carries the logo of Spika – short for Spielewerk Karl-Marx-Stadt.

Begriffe-Lotto game 2
Source: mozart293. License: All Rights Reserved.
Begriffe-Lotto game 3
Source: sammlertreff_alex. License: All Rights Reserved.
Begriffe-Lotto game 4
Source: Madeleine Melzer. License: All Rights Reserved.
Begriffe-Lotto game 5
Source: Madeleine Melzer. License: All Rights Reserved.
Begriffe-Lotto game 6
Source: Madeleine Melzer. License: All Rights Reserved.


  • Cut-In
  • Thannhaeuser-Schrift




Artwork location

1 Comment on “Begriffe-Lotto game”

  1. See also this post about another game released the same year in the other Germany, which likewise uses a 1970s Letraset face for the name, and a typeface with roots in 1920s Germany for the instructions.

    Happy German Unity Day!

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