The idea of using signs to represent and communicate thoughts e
words was one of the greatest feats of the human imagination: it can
it may even be that the invention of writing has facilitated more than
any other idea social and cultural development.
On some books we read that in the most ancient societies knowledge
writing was more than a privilege, it was a social function,
linked to religion and the art of governing.
It is not known when and how writing began; on several texts yes
law that men already wrote a few centuries before 3000 BC,
as clay tablets written by the Sumerians have come down to us
of Mesopotamia around that time, in which the first forms were
The pictorial writing, today considered the first stage of
actual writing, consists of drawings that follow one another a
form a narrative or a chain of ideas.
From pictorial writing we moved on to ideographic writing and then
analytics, up to the invention of phonetic systems - first
syllabic and then alphabetic - which made writing easier,
favoring its flexibility and greatly reducing the number of
Writing represents a universal means of communication and doing
calligraphy means paying attention to the rules of beauty and of
harmony that govern the shape of the letters.
Even the Romans had great care in drawing and sculpting the
letters of the official writings, so much so that even today the letters of
Roman type are some of the most beautiful, legible and balanced.
In Italy the 'cursive' was born, that is writing inclined towards
right. This style gives a sense of great elegance but also of
greater confidentiality and moves away from the solemnity of the capital
Roman. The papal chancellery, for example, sent letters in this
style to the various bishops and rulers, so much so that it became the typical style
'regal'. In fact, from the word 'chancellery' derives its name of
'cancelleresco' (used in Italy) or 'cancery' (used in England).
The Anglo-Saxons still call italic italic because it is
they saw on letters from Italy.
For Western culture, Italy is an important one
reference, having built a very rich one in two thousand years of history
heritage of writings still considered fundamental models,
such as the original calligraphy that our predecessors
they used in the periods ranging from the 5th century BC to the XVIII °, such as:
rustic, Roman square capital, uncial, gothic, chancellery
italics, round and English italics.
Technology and the spread of computers everywhere has made that
the pen is almost no longer used. Even in schools the “beautiful
calligraphy ”no longer exists.
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