In short, Robert Bringhurst says

  • He does not object to starting a sentence with a word in small caps. He doesn't object to capitalizing a word in small caps, as long it is a word and not an acronym.
  • He says that if I like guillemets, I should use them.
  • He is not enthusiastic about concocted ligatures, and seems to indicate that other than for exact transcriptions, ligatures should only be used when the design of the typeface requires them.
  • As for using typefaces to emphasize or pick out semantic distinctions he says that it would be best to consider the problem on a case by case basis.
  • He did not seem to have much specific advice when answering Chris's question about typography in other mediums (especially for presentations or on the web).
  • He thinks AMS Euler is a wonderful typeface design, but that it is incomplete in many ways (lack of proper kern tables, missing glyphs, etc.) and that the AMS should fund someone to produce a proper OpenType version.

I'll probably verify with him before too long that it he is fine with using more detailed excerpts of his response in a public setting.


  1. kitby said,

    July 14, 2006 @ 9:34 pm

    What exactly is meant by the fourth bullet point (using typefaces to pick out semantic distinctions)?

  2. washburn said,

    July 15, 2006 @ 12:07 am

    This means things like using a different typeface for code than normal text, for example. Or a different typeface for mathematics, so that numbers in prose are different than numbers in math. I should probably post the list of questions, but I should ask Chris whether it is okay to put his question into public distribution.

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