Vatican Initials has been revived as Vicarage Initials PDS. JPEG attached. There are free versions called Vaticanian Initials and some such, but they are bogus. This one is the real deal and took weeks of work to create consistency in every aspect possible.
Thanks for this gorgeous font, Alan! I have one of the free versions and have always wondered about its history. I have never seen it “in the wild,” so I can’t supply info about it.
Monographs by Lehner,¹ Nesbitt² and Grafton³ do not illustrate it, so I’m “stuck.” Speculation… It may have originated before 1800. Italian? What was your specimen source?
¹Lehner, E. (1952): Alphabets and Ornaments. Dover Publications, Inc., Minneola, NY.
²Nesbitt, A. [Editor] (1959): Decorative Alphabets and Initials. Dover Publications, Inc., Minneola, NY.
³Grafton, C.B. [Editor] (1977): Historic Alphabets and Initials|Woodcut and Ornamental. Dover Publications, Inc., Minneola, NY.