Plate 7, Viva la Penna, Invento e incise questo nuovo metodo per formare un bel carattere (Long Live the Pen! These etchings demonstrate my new method of drawing characters), ca. 1801
This is a Plate 7.
Gaetano Giarrè, a late 18th century engraver working in Florence, celebrates the expressive use of the pen in this beautifully illustrated manual on the art of penmanship. The book consists of 16 pages each containing a variety of script styles ranging from the simple formation of individual letters to the artistic use of letters in long sentence and paragraphs. The creation of capital letters, the connection of letters within words, spacing, slanting, and the proper use of embellishment are some of the lessons included intended to inspire and be copied by students. In this plate, a playful human-dragon figure comprised of swirling lines is situated between two elaborately ornamented script sets as Giarrè declares “Viva la Penna” (long live the pen!).
It is credited
Smithsonian Libraries Z43 .G43 1801.
This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Making Design.