lettering, typography, alphabets, stonework Thoughts on lettering typography

Monotype Pitt: help required in tracing: help found and update

In The Monotype Recorder vol 36, no. 3 [December 1937], the Fortieth Birthday Number is a report on the Fifty Books of 1936: the type faces used.

Monotype Recorder 1937
The Monotype Recorder

Reading through the list I came across reference to Monotype Pitt (private). The text speaks of ‘the Pitt 8vo Bible of the Cambridge University Press, which was designed with special reference to the requirements of schools’.

While I am aware of the tradition of CUP for its Pitt Bible series, as well as the Pitt Building, in the town, I have never come across a type face so named. Can anyone throw light on this?

Monotype Pitt
Monotype Pitt









Following Marvin’s answer to my question I am pleased to show this page from my copy of the Monotype Type Faces, dated [bottom left] 9-63:

Times Roman semi bold 421
Times Series 421


2 replies on “Monotype Pitt: help required in tracing: help found and update”

Pitt font is a ”7 point version of Times Semi Bold.”

See also ”Stanley Morison A Portrait” British museum 1971, page 37, item 90:

”The Holy Bible, Cambridge, . . .1936. . . . The basic requirement of the text . .. was . . . that the volume should sell for 2s, 6d. First the Printer worked out how many sheets he could afford to machine within this price-limit; next Morison established the maximum area upon the sheet which could actually carry text, then designed the Times Semi-Bold version of Times New Roman to accommodate the text within these limits.”

See also The Work of Jan van Krimpen, 1952, Sheldon, a Bible type for Oxford University Press, page 48. Author John Dreyfus says:

“The proportions of the lower case letters . . . correspond to those of Times Semi-Bold which was originally cut as a Bible type for Cambridge University Press.”

See also Monotype Looseleaf Specimen Book, Times New Romans Semi-Bold 421, in 6-1/2 and 7 point sizes. There is also a 6 pt size font. (My copy of sheet is dated 9-69.)

I will guess that in the era of Monotype composition the purpose was to design a ”custom” font that would use an already-existing Monotype diecase arrangement and standard set of stopbars on the composition keyboard.


Thank you Marvin for the comprehensive answer. Much appreciated and I will attach my copy of Times 421 which is dated 9-63

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s