Diamond Tittles

hrant's picture

No, I'm not talking about bling pasties... (Sorry, I had to.)

I'd like to compile a list of fonts where the dots of "i", etc. are shaped like diamonds (although not necessarily perfect ones). Here's a starter - OurType's Meran:


cerulean's picture


Joshua Langman's picture

Warnock Pro.

A great many quill scripts.

quadibloc's picture

Jenson Oldstyle also (but, incredibly, not Kelmscott Roman).

HVB's picture

Diamond Fantasy (Neale Davidson)
Diamond Gothic (Jim Fordyce)

Karl Stange's picture

Jeremy Tankard's Alchemy, Blue Island and Wayfarer.

Nick Cooke's picture

Ocean Sans.

hrant's picture

Wow, what a great collection so far - thanks guys. Keep it up!

BTW if the Italic of a face but not the Roman has a diamond tittle that's fine too.


marcox's picture

What's the occasion, Hrant?

sevag's picture

Fedra Sans, Fedra Serif A, Fedra Serif B, Fedra Mono

Si_Daniels's picture

A system font - Sakkal Majalla

hrant's picture

Marc, Simon just started giving it away... :-)


quadibloc's picture

Italia, also, is like Jenson Oldstyle in this regard.

5star's picture

No, I'm not talking about bling pasties...




ahyangyi's picture

Tallys by Jos Buivenga.

enne_son's picture

[Marc Oxborrow] What's the occasion, Hrant?

Probably it’s basis in writing with the broad-nibbed pen.

hrant's picture

I never like curtailing speculation, but it's probably high time already:
It sort of has to do with chirography, in that this is about Arabic, and Arabic is conservative that way. But chirography per se is actually circumstantial here. Basically this query stems from an idea I got from Onur Yazıcıgil's presentation at the New Orleans TypeCon*, an idea that I elaborated in my ISType talk** in June: in order to express the glorious Arabic past of Turkish writing (something admittedly not all Turks are crazy about, but I think it's a key way of defending Turkish culture in a Western world) a nice subtle trick would be to make the tittles diamond-shaped. This would also extend to giving any Latin setting a gentle Arabic vibe.

* http://onuredy.wordpress.com/2011/05/20/hello-world/

** http://www.istype.com/?p=776

During my talk I showed the following image that proposes a quick mod to Carter Sans Italic for setting Turkish:

Quite contrary to the view of some Turks that evoking Arabic would be backwards, my view is that doing it subtly would in fact be... sophisticated.

BTW one "cosmic" thing that happened in Istanbul was that immediately after my talk Fred Smeijers started his own presentation and he was using Meran for the text! :-)


eliason's picture

Those diamond tittles really clash with Carter Sans's flat-topped ascenders IMO.

hrant's picture

Maybe the tittles can be turned a bit clock-wise and the ascender tops given a shear to match.

On the other hand for text work my view has long been that formal congruence is over-rated.


hrant's picture

BTW one bonus here is the important role of the tittle in Turkish in diverging from the dotless "i".

It matters:


John Hudson's picture

I'm sorry, Hrant, but you are making something out of nothing, and I thought this during your ISType presentation too. Yes, of course the presence or absence of dot in Turkish matters, but its shape doesn't, and Turkish text looks like Turkish text to the people who matter, Turkish readers, without a design feature that is at once too subtle to be significant and too nostalgically suggestive of something for which there is no nostalgia. It's ironic that your demonstration word is 'sophisticated', since the result looks so naff.

hrant's picture

Thanks for being candid. You could've done it there too. :-) Seriously, there's nothing better for cultural progress than public challenge.

I admit that comparing the shape of the dot to no dot at all isn't entirely fair. But the shape does matter:

too subtle to be significant

This is frankly surprising to hear from a text face designer. Maybe I've misunderstood this aspect of your approach to type design all these years.

And how could it be "naff" if it's too subtle?

for which there is no nostalgia.

I hate nostalgia. It's not my intent to leverage such a base emotion.* My angle is cultural preservation, especially in the context of possible admission into the European Union. And anybody who thinks Arabic has no relevance to Turkish culture is simply fooling himself. Walking around Istanbul completely confirmed this for me. I sent Alessandro some photos showing how engrained Arabic remains to Turks (for publication in his "mini interview" thing) but I won't show them here lest I steal his thunder. Calling the influence "decorative" is a convenient superficial escape.

* Although I do think that Turks who lean more towards Islam are more likely to yearn for the "good old days". And remember that -at least among some Muslims- the Qur'aan is only "official" in Arabic.


John Hudson's picture

I meant to subtle to be significant in itself to readers. Within the design, it is significant in formal terms, but as a single detail it is too insignificant to carry the weight of cultural implications that you want to load on it. I think there is often an odd disconnect between the grandness of your ideas and a kind of timidity in their application.

As for naff, I was referring to your Carter Sans illustration. At that size, the dots are far from subtle.

I too saw the large amount of Ottoman building lettering in in Arabic script in Istanbul (and also purchased a book on the subject that I have given to Tom Milo), but other than representing an official policy to preserve historical record I didn't see any indication that the script is important for modern Turks who cannot read it. I wouldn't even call the influence of these artefacts 'decorative'; I don't think there is an influence. I saw huge amounts of modern Turkish signage, and no trace of any connection to the older Ottoman cartouches.

quadibloc's picture

@John Hudson:
I didn't see any indication that the script is important for modern Turks who cannot read it.

Well, the Tagala abugida is of interest to some Filipinos who can't read it.

Also, the overwhelming majority of Turks are Sunni Muslims, and I think this means that the Quran is only 'official' in Arabic for them - thus, while Turkey has mass literacy in the Latin script for the Turkish language, I would expect Arabic literacy to still be widespread in that country.

Even Muslim clergy of liberal political inclinations would need to engage in Quranic scholarship - in order to defend their positions.

I know this should go in an E-mail or something...

I see you've designed an Armenian-language keyboard layout, based on traditional typewriter layouts. I happen to have some familiarity with what has been done with typewriter layouts in the past, and thus I have the temerity to make some suggestions for improvement:

1) As you must resort to a third shift for the digits, due to the number of letters in Armenian, there is no good reason to keep them on the top row. As some Katakana layouts have done (image link), you should place them on the home row (ASDFGHJKL;).

2) Also, as this gives the AltGr third shift a very high degree of prominence in the Armenian keyboard, as opposed to keyboards like Canadian French or Brazilian Portuguese, where it is simply used for less-common accented letters or additional special characters and punctuation, you should offer the option of a reassignment of certain additional keys on the keyboard:

Left and right Ctrl keys -> AltGr
Caps Lock key -> Ctrl
Right Alt key -> Caps Lock

For those who prefer to keep Caps Lock where it is, just moving the Ctrl key to the right Alt key could be another option.

EDIT: I have sent an E-mail now about this to the appropriate party, Michael Everson.

dberlow's picture

I kinda guessed this was not just going to be a list of diamond tittled fonts. ;)

manyaldesign's picture

I love Orpheus Pro from Canada Type

Nick Shinn's picture

Note my comment on this post:

quadibloc's picture

Oooh! Scary! Biscuits made from triticale, an artificial life form made by combining the chromosomes from wheat and rye!

Nick Shinn's picture

Looks like the packaging consultants dropped the ball on this one :-)

quadibloc's picture

As opposed to the old fashioned square kind. I found the joke less amusing than I could have.

quadibloc's picture

I just came across Schicke by Andreas Dauerer, as an image of that on Luc Devroye's site came up in a Google search.

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