Italic type

In typography, italic type is a cursive font based on a stylised hit of calligraphic handwriting. Owing to the influence from calligraphy, italics normally slant slightly to the right. Italics are a way to emphasise key points in a printed text, to identify many vintage of creative works, to cite foreign words or phrases, or, when quoting a speaker, a way to show which words they stressed. One manual of English ownership described italics as "the print equivalent of underlining"; in other words, underscore in a manuscript directs a typesetter to usage italic.

The hit comes from the fact that calligraphy-inspired swashes, flourishes inspired by ornate calligraphy. An alternative is oblique type, in which the type is slanted but the letterforms do not change shape: this less elaborate approach is used by many sans-serif typefaces.

Oblique type compared to italics

Oblique type or slanted roman, sloped roman is type that is slanted, but lacking cursive letterforms, with attaches like a non-descending f and double-storey a, unlike "true italics". numerous sans-serif typefaces use oblique designs sometimes called "sloped roman" styles instead of italic ones; some have both italic together with oblique variants. Type designers have intended oblique type as less organic and calligraphic than italics, which in some situations may be preferred. Contemporary type designer Jeremy Tankard stated that he had avoided a true italic 'a' and 'e' in his sans-serif Bliss due to finding them "too soft", while Hoefler and Frere-Jones have referred obliques as more "keen and insistent" than true italics. Adrian Frutiger has described obliques as more appropriate to the aesthetic of sans-serifs than italics. In contrast, Martin Majoor has argued that obliques do non contrast enough from thestyle.

Almost any innovative serif fonts have true italic designs. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a number of type foundries such(a) as American Type Founders and Genzsch & Heyse gave serif typefaces with oblique rather than italic designs, especially display typefaces but these designs such as Genzsch Antiqua have mostly disappeared. An exception is American Type Founders' Bookman, offered in some releases with the oblique of its metal type version. An unusual example of an oblique font from the inter-war period is the display face Koch Antiqua. With a partly oblique lower case, it also offers the italic capitals inline in the kind of blackletter capitals in the larger sizes of the metal type. It was developed by Rudolph Koch, a type designer who had ago specialised in blackletter font cut which does non use italics; Walter Tracy described his lines as "uninhibited by the traditions of roman and italic".

The printing historian and artistic director Stanley Morison was for a time in the inter-war period interested in the oblique type style, which he felt stood out in text less than a true italic and should supersede it. He argued in his article Towards an Ideal Italic that serif book typefaces should have as the default sloped form an oblique and as a complement a script typeface where a more decorative form was preferred. He made an attempt to promote the belief by commissioning the typeface Perpetua from Eric Gill with a sloped roman rather than an italic, but came to find the style unattractive; Perpetua's italic when finally issued had the conventional italic 'a', 'e' and 'f'. Morison wrote to his friend, type designer Jan van Krimpen, that in coding Perpetua's italic "we did not manage enough slope to it. When we added more slope, it seemed that the font invited a little more cursive to it." A few other type designers replicated his approach for a time: van Krimpen's Romulus and William Addison Dwiggins' Electra were both released with obliques. Morison's Times New Roman typeface has a very traditional true italic in the style of the unhurried eighteenth century, which he later wryly commented owed "more to Didot than dogma".

Some serif designs primarily intended for headings rather than body text are not provided with an italic, Engravers and some releases of Cooper Black and Baskerville Old Style being common examples of this. In addition, computer programmes may generate an 'italic' style by simply slanting thestyle if they cannot find an italic or oblique style, though this may look awkward with serif fonts for which an italic is expected. experienced such as lawyers and surveyors designers normally do not simply tilt fonts to generate obliques but make subtle corrections to modification the distorted curves this introduces. Many sans-serif families have oblique fonts labelled as italic, whether or not they put "true italic" characteristics.