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The Elements of Typographic Style

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Title: The Elements of Typographic Style  
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Subject: Robert Bringhurst, Fleuron (typography), Hartley & Marks Publishers, Design books, ACS style
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The Elements of Typographic Style

The Elements of Typographic Style
Cover of the Canadian first edition
Author Robert Bringhurst
Country Canada
Language English
Subject Typography
Publisher Hartley & Marks Publishers
Publication date
Pages 254 pp (first edition)
OCLC 25411784
686.2/24 20
LC Class Z246 .B74 1992

The Elements of Typographic Style is the authoritative book on typography and style by Canadian typographer, poet and translator Robert Bringhurst. Originally published in 1992 by Hartley & Marks Publishers, it was revised in 1996, 2001 (v2.4), 2002 (v2.5), 2004 (v3.0), 2005 (v3.1), 2008 (v3.2), and 2012 (v4.0). A history and guide to typography, it has been praised by Hermann Zapf, who said “I wish to see this book become the Typographers’ Bible.”[1] Jonathan Hoefler and Tobias Frere-Jones consider it "the finest book ever written about typography," according to the FAQ section of their type foundry's website.[2] Because of its status as a respected and frequently cited resource, typographers and designers often refer to it simply as Bringhurst.

The title alludes to The Elements of Style, the classic guide to writing by Strunk and White.[3]


  • Chapters 1
  • Editions 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


The titles of the chapters in the book's fourth edition are as follows:

  1. The Grand Design
  2. Rhythm & Proportion
  3. Harmony & Counterpoint
  4. Structural Forms & Devices
  5. Analphabetic Symbols
  6. Choosing & Combining Type
  7. Historical Interlude
  8. Shaping the Page
  9. The State of the Art
  10. Grooming the Font
  11. Prowling the Specimen Books

In addition to these chapters, the book also contains five appendices, a historical synopsis, a foreword, and an afterword.


  • First edition: Hartley & Marks Publishers, 1992, 254pp, ISBN 0-88179-110-5 (hardcover)
  • Second edition: Hartley & Marks Publishers, 1996, 352pp, ISBN 0-88179-133-4 (hardcover), ISBN 0-88179-132-6 (paperback)
  • Third edition: Hartley & Marks Publishers, 2005, ISBN 0-88179-205-5 (hardcover), ISBN 0-88179-206-3 (paperback)
  • Fourth edition: Hartley & Marks Publishers, 2012, ISBN 0-88179-211-X (hardcover), ISBN 0-88179-212-8 (paperback)

See also


  1. ^ Hermann Zapf, as cited on the back cover of the book in version 4.0, ISBN 978-0-88179-212-6
  2. ^ "Can you recommend any good books on typography?". Retrieved 2014-10-13. 
  3. ^ Foreword to version 3.1, p. 9, ISBN 0-88179-206-3

External links

  • The Elements of Typographic Style Applied to the Web – an unaffiliated webpage applying the same principles to web typography
  • A Classic Thesis style - An Homage to The Elements of Typographic StyleLaTeX and LyX template for dissertations, books and articles inspired by Bringhurst's book
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