Blackletter Gone Bild Wild


The "Tweed" column from the Chronicle of Higher Education had an amusing story of a Blackletter glyph variant glitch on the new University of Idaho diplomas (specifically "Congrabulations on Your Grabuation!")

As with many U.S. diplomas, the university name was rendered in a Blackletter (aka "Old English" or Gothic") calligraphic style font. This font though had a particularly high flourish on the lower case "v", high enough that recipients wondered if they had written a "b" instead of "v" (and who wants a diploma from the Unibersity of Iowa?).

According to the Chronicle, the administration reassured them that it was an archaic "v", but this case does highlight the legibility issues of some older manuscript fonts and the need to balance historical font authenticity with modern needs.

About The Blog

I am a Penn State technology specialist with a degree in linguistics and have maintained the Penn State Computing with Accents page since 2000.

See Elizabeth Pyatt's Homepage ( for a profile.


The standard commenting utility has been disabled due to hungry spam. If you have a comment, please feel free to drop me a line at (

Powered by Movable Type Pro

Recent Comments