AN EPOCH OF TYPOGRAPHIC GENIUS
After a drought of graphic-design creativity during the 1600s, the eighteenth century was an epoch of typographic originality. In 1692 the French king Louis XIV, who had a strong interest in printing, ordered a committee of scholars to develop a new typeface for the Imprimerie Royale, the royal printing office established in 1640 to restore quality. The new letters were to be designed by "scientific" principles. Headed by mathematician Nicolas Jaugeon, the academicians examined all previous alphabets and studies on type design.