On Sesquicentennial of First Tube Ride, a Look at the Incredible Design Influence of London Underground

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type and graphic

credit: Via imprint

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In 1913 he hired typographer Edward Johnston; according to Wikipedia he " specified to Johnston in 1913 that he wanted a typeface that would ensure that the Underground Group's posters would not be mistaken for advertisements; it should have "the bold simplicity of the authentic lettering of the finest periods" and belong "unmistakably to the twentieth century"

The result was the sans serif type now known as Johnston. According to The Legacy of Edward Johnston:

The epoch-making sans-serif alphabet he designed for the London Underground Railways changed the face of typography in the twentieth century whilst two of the most popular types of our day ‘Perpetua’ and ‘Gill Sans’ were by his great pupil Eric Gill (1882-1940).

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