Most if not all individuals handle a product it produces every single day of their life. From the time of an individual’s earliest memory, the commonness of the item is taken for granted and enjoyed. Without it the world would be a much different place. Social and economic and even religious institutions have come under its mighty power. But yet, it is a small and simple thing, sometimes smaller than a period at the end of a sentence. What is this mystery item that has become common yet impacted so much of our world? This item is movable type. Movable type has a rich and fascinating history to explore. Movable type has not always been the same, just like any other item it has changed and evolved. This evolution has caused there to be an art form to this great tool of communication. This brief article will take short overview of the art and history of movable type. Individuals who wish for a deeper knowledge of this fascinating area of interest are advised to seek the informative pages located at Wikipedia.
Movable type had simple and humble beginnings. The first movable type was found in China during the Song dynasty. It was later on in Korea that the first metal movable type was employed. From its earliest usage the type was used for money printing and religious texts. These two areas are still common uses for metal type today. It was not until 1450 that Johannes Gutenberg introduced the idea to the west with his printing press. Soon after the introduction of the printing press many individuals began to develop better machines and typefaces.
The earliest western typefaces were made from a hand mold; while these worked they limited the process of printing greatly. This process was soon overtaken by the cast mold method. With the cast molding method the variety of types proliferated quickly. It was soon after the use of cast typing that many of our societies more common types were invented. The technology to use the types has constantly evolved and improved. The use of this variety of styles allowed for a great use of artistic flair and design. Due to this movable type can take on the appearance of art and beauty.