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Jan Tschichold designed Sabon in 1964, and it was produced jointly by three foundries: D. Stempel AG, Linotype and Monotype. This was in response to a request from German master printers to make a font family that was the same design for the three metal type technologies of the time: foundry type for hand composition, linecasting, and single-type machine composition. Tschichold turned to the sixteenth century for inspiration, and the story has a complicated family thread that connects his Sabon design to the Garamond lineage.
Jakob Sabon, who the type is named for, was a student of the great French punchcutter Claude Garamond. He completed a set of his teacher's punches after Garamond's death in 1561. Sabon became owner of a German foundry when he married the granddaughter of the Frankfurt printer, Christian Egenolff. Sabon died in 1580, and his widow married Konrad Berner, who took over the foundry. Tschichold loosely based his design on types from the 1592 specimen sheet issued by the Egenolff-Berner foundry: a 14-point roman attributed to Claude Garamond, and an italic attributed to Robert Granjon. Sabon was the typeface name chosen for this twentieth century revival and joint venture in production; this name avoided confusion with other fonts connected with the names of Garamond and Granjon.
Classic, elegant, and extremely legible, Sabon is one of the most beautiful Garamond variations. Always a good choice for book typography, the Sabon family is also particularly good for text and headlines in magazines, advertisements, documentation, business reports, corporate design, multimedia, and correspondence.
Sabon combines well with:
Sans serif fonts such as Frutiger, Syntax.
Slab serif fonts such as PMN Caecilia, Clairvaux.
Fun fonts such as Grafilone, Animalia, Araby Rafique.
See also the new revised version Sabon Next from the Platinum Collection."
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