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U&lc Online Issue: 28.1.1

Calligraphic Fonts


by Ilene Strizver


For Your Typographic

Calligraphic fonts resemble elegant handwriting. They often look as if they were drawn with flat-tipped pens or brushes; occasionally, they even include the drips, spots, blotches and irregularities characteristic of hand-drawn letters.

Unlike scripts, the lowercase letters of a calligraphic font are not usually connected. Styles vary from historical and formal to edgy, whimsical, or sentimental. Calligraphic fonts generally work best as display designs.

Because of their human, organic quality, calligraphic fonts can be the perfect choice for designing personalized invitations, announcements, and greeting cards. They’ve been used to set short poems and proverbs, and are often seen on projects that need to convey a sense of personality, such as posters, book covers and CD packaging. Calligraphic type designs are a great source for decorative initial letters to liven up text applications, too.

Probably as a response to our increasingly high-tech world, there has been a resurgence of interest in the “human touch” of calligraphic typefaces. As a result, there are now hundreds of calligraphic styles to choose from. They span a wide variety of moods, but all of them recapture the warmth, character and distinctiveness of handwritten letterforms.

These fonts are available from


Humana Script
John Handy

Editor’s Note: Ilene Strizver, founder of The Type Studio, is a typographic consultant, designer and writer specializing in all aspects of typographic communication. Read more about typography in her latest literary effort, Type Rules!, published by North Light Books. This article was commissioned and approved by Monotype Imaging Inc.



Calligraphic FontsHumana Script BallerinoChillerMuscleheadAlexaHrabanusAridChocRiptide
Click on font to view.

Calligraphic Fonts BraganzaSwankMonmouthMistralMargueritaLudovicoKickJohn Handy