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The Universal Penman by George Bickham
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The Universal Penman (1741)

by George Bickham

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If you are a pointed pen enthusiast or a history buff or just someone who enjoys beautiful writing then you must take a gander at this book. It contains 212 plates of English writing from the late 17th and early 18th century. It is the only representation of the writing style in this period. Actually, George, took on the daunting task of compiling the works of the masters of the time. The Universal Penman was not published as a complete book, in fact it was broken up over 52 publications to the scribers over an eight year period. Those that wanted a complete “book” bound it themselves. Very few original copies exist and most as you can imagine are not complete. The down turn in handwriting with the invention of the type writer left even more of the original prints to collect dust and in general be left untended to sub-come to moisture and disarray. Even those copies that exist were well used as this was the intent of the publication, not to be stored away and only looked at with kit gloves.
Do NOT expect to learn pointed pen from this book. There is no instruction given, only the plates of the masters of the time. Now, for those with pointed pen experience or those wanting to play and get a “fresh” look of different letters and even design; that is what you will take away from this book. It is a wealth and treasure trove of gorgeous writing to be mimicked for decades to come! ( )
  Kaligrafos | Apr 10, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0486206165, Paperback)

"An essential part of any art library, and a book of permanent value not affected by seasonal styles." — American Artist. Here is Bickham's famous treasury of English roundhand calligraphy from 1740. Includes 125 pictorial scenes, over 200 script pictures, 19 complete animals, 275 lettered specimens, more than 100 panels, frames, cartouches, and other effects, and more.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:49 -0400)

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