Skip to main content

Times®

By Linotype

Stanley Morison
Linotype

Times™ is a Roman serif family of typefaces designed by Stanley Morison in 1931, published by the Monotype Corporation in 1932 and later by Adobe Systems (1980).Times is available in seven typefaces including bold and italic styles.

Times™ was named after the Times newspaper in the UK and was the result of a criticism made by renowned typographer Stanley Morison that the Times newspaper was outdated from a typographical perspective and that the paper was badly printed; all of which made the newspaper difficult to read. The newspaper took up this criticism in a constructive manner by commissioning a new typeface for them to use in daily print. Morison supervised the new design which was actually drawn by Victor Lardent who worked as an artist for the Times newspaper. The Times typeface was based upon a much older typeface called Plantin. Morison set about revising this existing typeface with economy of space and legibility being the major criteria.

The new typeface was released in 1932 and appeared in the Times newspaper in October of that year. Times offered better contrast, was more condensed and was an overall success for the paper. The paper increased sales significantly and the main reason seemed to be the improvement in print quality. After a year of use in the Times newspaper, the typeface was made available for public sale.

Linotype optimized the Times typeface for line-casting technology which was the latest printing method of the period. The typeface that the Times newspaper used became known as Times New Roman® (because the existing typeface was named Times Old Roman) and was a very successful maneuver for the paper. At the same time that they switched over to the new typeface, they also introduced a new type of paper and their printers were outputting a much higher quality publication than their competitors. The combination of the easier to read typeface and the distinctive whiter paper made the newspaper a hit among readers; despite the ongoing depression in the 1930‘s the paper did comparatively well.

Over the years the use of the small but versatile Times font family grew and grew until it became the de facto standard for publications of all types. From newspaper and magazine publishing and across all areas of business reports and publications, Times is everywhere in print. To add to the popularity of use, nearly every printer available for the last three decades has the four basic Times fonts built into the firmware/hardware as a basic proportional-spaced serif font for printing. The Times font is a standard just about everywhere; from the Internet to Adobe‘s embedded PostScript, Times appears on just about every font list imaginable, from the technologies of the 1930‘s to the 21st century, Times still holds top spot in terms of its daily use around the globe.

References:
Linotype Times Family
Identifont - Times

Just about every publication has used Times at some time or another. Some publications use nothing else – many newspapers still use this workhorse of a font which can be found in nearly every corner of the world; from commercial publishing, book printing, through to business and personal communications Times is profoundly visible. Its inclusion as a standard printer font has broadened its application by being installed in the hardware of hundreds of millions of printers around the world.

Transitional
Serif