Palatino is the name of a large typeface family that began as an old style serif typeface designed by Hermann Zapf initially released in 1948 by the Linotype foundry.
In 1999, Zapf revised Palatino for Linotype and Microsoft, called Palatino Linotype. The revised family incorporated extended Latin, Greek, and Cyrillic character sets.
Under the collaboration of Zapf and Akira Kobayashi, the Palatino typeface family was expanded. Linotype released the Palatino nova, Palatino Sans, and Palatino Sans Informal families, expanding the Palatino typeface families to include humanist sans-serif typefaces. Palatino nova was released in 2005, while the others were released in 2006.
Named after 16th century Italian master of calligraphy Giambattista Palatino, Palatino is based on the humanist fonts of the Italian Renaissance, which mirror the letters formed by a broad nib pen; this gives a calligraphic grace. But where the Renaissance faces tend to use smaller letters with longer vertical lines (ascenders and descenders) with lighter strokes, Palatino has larger proportions, and is considered to be a much easier to read typeface.
It remains one of the most widely-used (and copied) text typefaces, has been adapted to virtually every type of technology, and is one of the ten most used serif typefaces. It is one of several related typefaces by Zapf, each showing influence of the Italian Renaissance letter forms. The group includes Palatine, Sistina, Michaelangelo Titling, and Aldus, which takes inspiration from printing types cut by Francesco Griffo c. 1495 in the print shop of Aldus Manutius.
Palatino Linotype is a version of the Palatino family that incorporates extended Latin, Greek, Cyrillic characters, as well as currency signs, subscripts and superscripts, and fractions. The family includes roman and italic in text and bold weights. It is one of the few fonts to incorporate an interrobang.
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