Welcome! Forums Revivals T Tudoresque

This topic contains 9 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  jch02140 1 year, 10 months ago.

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December 14, 2013 at 9:37 AM #6435


Tudoresque is an IMPORTANT 19th-century face that “spun off” multiple imitations. NicoletteGray writes that this “over-the-top” o-l-d-i-e was a Figgins design introduced in 1847. Indeed, it is not shown in the digital copy of the edition she dates as c1846.¹

A similar “timmed down” face was shown in the US by the Bruce TF as Medieval [right] (≤1869). Furthermore in 1870, Herman Ihlenburg patented a face tradenamed Medieval Text by MacKellar , Smiths & Jordan, the assignee [USPTO D3813].

The Bruce and MSJ faces are distinctly different, and yet the eternal Type Tradename Tangle has confused historians about these three faces.²·³ Thanks to a tip from THP Partner Brian Bonislawsky, a specimen of the Figgins original was discovered in the Rob Yablon collection.

The caps and numerals of this face were “fonted” by Sorceror in 2005, who reports:

“This font is based loosely on a script found in the book Hill’s Manual of Social and Business Forms (Chicago: Hill Standard Book Co., 1893) by Thomas E. Hill.*  This font is Shareware.  To purchase the rights to use this font, contact the author at the e-mail address above.  Purchase price is $5.00 – This font may be used for educational purposes for no charge with my consent.  This font is not to be redistributed without express written permission beforehand.”

A permission request addressed as directed was not answered.

*Perhaps Hill added the ornate alternates, which have not been seen elsewhere.

GoudyLeaf-LeftSee also Medieval.

¹Gray, N. (1938): XIXth Century Ornamented Types and Title Pages, pages 136/188. Faber and Faber Limited, London.
²Solo, D.X. (1984): Gothic and Old English Alphabets|100 Complete Fonts, page 53. Dover Publications, Inc. (Min­ne­ola, NY.
³Johnston, A.M.; Saxe, S.O. [Editors](2009): William E. Loy|Nineteenth-Century American Designers and Engravers of Type, page 43. Oak Knoll Books, New Castle, DE.

Preliminary Specimens

PDF, existing caps font with ornate background alternates
Hard-copy scans, grayscale @1200 dpi:

Full dual-case alphabet with partial numerals
Complete numerals

December 20, 2013 at 6:05 AM #6576


This one with a different A has also been digitized by Chyrllene K. (I don’t know what the K stands for)), named Enchiridion. http://www.dafont.com/enchiridion.font

January 3, 2014 at 9:51 AM #6853


Tudoresque“Enchiridion”Thanks for the tip, KK. I can’t account for the interesting A in the Chyrllene K./Intellecta version [right]—never seen this variation before…

Figgins’ original A was outrageously distinctive with the “bone-shaped” bar across the apex, tassels and “everything but the kitchen sink”!

My hunch is that this revival substitutes a new A to address today’s market for “occult-ish” fonts for use in games, etc.

THP still hopes for a dual-case revival faithful to the one introduced by Vincent Figgins and his son, even though it’s admittedly nuts (What were they thinking?).

January 4, 2014 at 7:01 AM #6857


“Enchiridion”I just figirued out that quirky A: The V flipped vertically and horizontally. Do you recognize the T? It’s imported from another face that I can’t quite place—very similar to Ihlenburg’s Oxonian. The real T replaces the Z.

January 14, 2014 at 7:53 AM #7155


That T is the T of the Geschlossen Gotik Kaps. An Altmark font, revived by Jim Fordyce in 1993.

January 15, 2014 at 10:55 PM #7156


Thanks again, KK—your eye and your memory are impressive! I have the Fordyce font and have never matched it with an “analog ancestor.” Hoping that someone can tell me, I started a new topic about it.

March 14, 2016 at 10:10 AM #26713


Tudoresque has been digitized by Brian J. Bronislawsky as MFC Hills Medieval under his second font foundry Monogram Fonts Co.,


Would be nice to see Medieval get digitized as well…

March 15, 2016 at 11:01 AM #26763


Thanks for the info!

Please read my followup about Medieval.

March 16, 2016 at 10:14 PM #26785


Sorry Johney,

Further research of Medieval led to even-closer examination/analysis/interpretation of Herman Ihlenburg’s life and work. Together with technical problems at flickr.com [OUCH!], publication of my contribution to historical knowledge of this font has been delayed.


  • It is highly unlikely that Ihlenburg “recut” Tudoresque as Bruce Medieval 20+ years after introduction by Figgins in 1847.
  • The design for Medieval was not “new, novel and non-obvious,” so it was not patented in the US.
  • Lacking a patent exhibit, many glyphs are missing from extremely(!) scarce commercial specimens. I know only two Bruce catalog showings (1869 and 1901).

Consequently, Medieval may not be a candidate for digital revival–stay tuned…

P.S. Can you identify the source of your Medieval specimen citing Ihlenburg’s involvement?

March 17, 2016 at 9:18 AM #26807


Hi Anna,

That specimen was taken from Stephen Saxe’s proof of his metal type collections in his flickr account.
Unfortunately, there are no complete alphabet proof available…



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