Centaur is a humanist type family originally drawn as titling capitals by Bruce Rogers in 1914 for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The matrices were cut by Robert Wiebking and the type was privately cast by the American Type Foundry. The typeface is based upon several Renaissance models. Rogers' primary influence for the Roman was Nicholas Jenson's 1469 Eusebius, considered the model for the modern Roman alphabet.
Centaur also shows the influence of types cut by Francesco Griffo in 1495 for a small book titled De Aetna written by Pietro Bembo. The 1929 typeface Bembo is based primarily upon that specimen. Rogers later added the Roman lowercase, and the italic, based upon Ludovico Arrighi’s 1520 chancery face. These were drawn by Frederic Warde. The completed typeface was released for general use in 1929 by the Monotype Corporation Ltd.
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