lettering, typography, alphabets, stonework

Lettering on stone – Latinists on stone

It seems stone carving brings out the Latin in people. I declare that I was guilty of this, as demonstrated by this example (17cm x 10cm). Why? Something about the Roman heritage of carving? Something about the permanence of the object that befits a dead language? Any other suggestions most welcome. (The inscription reads: Now I know what loves means. Would that have been better expressed in English? I think not. But then I am a romantic.)

2 replies on “Lettering on stone – Latinists on stone”

Nick Benson pointed out the obvious to me earlier this week: Roman capitals were developed for the Latin language, like Cyrillic was for Russian. There is thus an organic integrity to the relationship. I am particularly fond of the motto of the now defunct Stinehour Press: HAEC OLIM MEMINISSE JUVABIT, which translates roughly as “In time to come you will enjoy recalling these things.” And then there’s OPTIMUM VIX SATIS: “The best is hardly good enough.” Allegedly the family motto of Daniel Berkeley Updike, the Rhode Island-born, Boston-based typographer.

Entirely true. Yet we are not Romans so need to find our own expression.

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