The Typography of Machiavelli

In choosing the typefaces for Machiavelli, I wanted to go with fonts that had a source in the period and evoked ink on paper.

P22 Morris Golden is used for captions and chapter pages.
p22 morris golden

William Morris (1834-1896) was probably the most influential figure in the decorative arts and private press movements of the late 19th and early 20th century. In reaction to the increasing lack of quality that the industrial revolution brought on, Morris sought a return to the ideals of the medieval craftsman. Dissatisfied with the commercially available typefaces of the day, he undertook the design of the fonts for his books himself…. The P22 Morris font set features new versions of Morris’s famous type designs for his Kelmscott Press. P22 created MORRIS GOLDEN with a rough edge to simulate the look of printing on handmade paper.

P22 Operina Pro is used for dialogue.
p22 operina pro

Operina is based on a 16th-century lettering model of the scribe Ludovico degli Arrighi (Vicentino Ludovico degli Arrighi) used in his 1522 instructional lettering book, La Operina da Imparare di scrivere littera Cancellarescha. This book contains what is considered to be the earliest printed examples of Chancery Cursive.

Rather than try to reproduce a perfect, smooth, type-like version of Ludovico’s hand, which has been attempted in the past, the designer opted to leave in some rough edges and, thereby, create a look that mimics the endearing artifacts of quill and ink lettering on parchment.

Arrighi type specimen sheet

Ludovico degli Arrighi: type specimen sheet from 1522.

Ludovico degli Arrighi began his career as a printer and publisher in 1524 in partnership with Lautizio Perugino, a goldsmith who may have been his punch cutter. Following Aldus’s lead, Arrighi used types based on the cancelleresca corsiva hand that was used by the Vatican scribes. Arrighi provided patterns for the corsiva in his writing manual, La Operina, published in Rome in 1522. (Source:

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