born 16. 2. 1740 in Saluzzo, Piedmont, Italy
as far back as 1758, in the
printing house of Propaganda Fide a Roma, in 1768
he was asked to run the printing house Regia of
Parma where we began to print valuable editions,
using inks mixed by himself.
In 1771, he established his own typography where
he cast characters of a rare perfection and printed
editions which became immediately famous for
their fine engravings, the beauty of their coat of
arms, the elegance of the front pages, the quality of
the paper and the nature of the inks.
The rules of his art were written by Bodoni himself
and are demonstrated in the "Manuale tipografico",
pubblished after his death by his widow Margherita
Dall'Aglio in 1818.
Bodoni was the most successful early proponent of what is referred to as the “modern” typeface, distinguished
by a strong contrast between the thin and thick strokes, and vertical,
rather than oblique, shading. His books were produced for the wealthy
and the aristocracy, and were more advanced in elegance and refinement
than anything else being printed in Europe. Intended more to be
admired than used.