Authorizing Hellenism: Early Greek Typography and the Reconstruction of Greek Identity

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This article explores early Greek type design (1490-1515) as a form of mobile identity reconstruction for Byzantine exiles living in Italy after the fall of constantinople. in examining the interplay between the technical and the cultural, i reveal how the rhetoric surrounding Greek type design, as well as the appearance of typefaces themselves, present textual and alphabetic materiality as revivifying access to a Greek past. in doing so, i approach these prefatory texts as more than repositories of evidence for the practices and procedures of early Greek print. instead, i illuminate their status as cultural and literary documents that recast Greek type design as a dynamic project of cultural reimagination.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-57
Number of pages29
JournalLias: Journal of Early Modern Intellectual Culture and its Sources
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Byzantine diaspora
  • Greek alphabet
  • Greek typography
  • Incunabular printing
  • Reception of Greek

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