Constantia (typeface)

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Constantia
Constantia sample alt.svg
Category Serif
Designer(s) John Hudson [1]
Foundry Microsoft

Constantia is a serif typeface designed by John Hudson and commissioned by Microsoft. It is a transitional serif design, influenced by Eric Gill's Perpetua design. Development of the typeface began in 2003 and it was released in 2006.

Constantia is part of the ClearType Font Collection, a suite of fonts from various designers released with Windows Vista. All start with the letter C to reflect that they were designed to work well with Microsoft's ClearType text rendering system, a text rendering engine designed to make text clearer to read on LCD monitors. The other fonts in the suite are Calibri, Cambria, Candara, Consolas and Corbel.

Features[edit]

Constantia was designed for either print or on-screen uses. Numerals are text figures by default, as seen on the sample image; the font also includes lining figures as an alternate style. Reviewing it for the website Typographica, Raph Levien described it as likely to be "everyone's favourite face [in the suite]...a highly readable Roman font departing only slightly from the classical model, [but] it still manages to be fresh and new. It takes some inspiration from Perpetua and Felicity...but the triangular serifs bring to mind a chisel, and the font has enough calligraphic flavor to recall Palatino."[2] Among other features, the design includes small capitals, alternative spacing and punctuation for all caps text, numbers enclosed by circles, and superscript and subscript glyphs.

A transitional serif design, the design features moderate contrast between thick and thin strokes and a nearly-vertical axis. To render well on ClearType the letter O and Q are slightly squared-off.

It is also distributed with various free Office viewers,[3][4][5] the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack[6] and the Open XML File Format Converter for Mac.[7]

Explaining its name, Hudson wrote: "I can’t remember all the possible names I came up with, each of which ended up rejected after international trademark searches...I’d been singing some psalms during vespers, and noticed the word constantia. Hey, I thought, that starts with C!"[8] Writing in 2011, Hudson commented, "I actually don't like the name Constantia very much, and every time I see the sea birds on the dock while I'm waiting for the ferry I wish I'd thought to call it Cormorant."[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Constantia - Version 5.50". Microsoft Corp. Retrieved 23 February 2011. 
  2. ^ Levienon, Raph. "Microsoft’s ClearType Font Collection: A Fair and Balanced Review". Typographica. Retrieved 24 November 2014. 
  3. ^ Word Viewer
  4. ^ Excel Viewer
  5. ^ Powerpoint Viewer
  6. ^ Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint File Formats
  7. ^ Open XML File Format Converter for Mac 1.2.1
  8. ^ Tuck, Michael. "A Comprehensive Guide to Windows Vista Fonts for Designers". Six Revisions. Retrieved 28 July 2015. 
  9. ^ Hudson, John. "Corbel discussion". Typophile forum thread. Retrieved 28 September 2014. 

External links[edit]