Wood 5-line type identification

Any thoughts on what typeface this is? It’s 5-line wood. There’s no maker mark but the shoulder of the A is imprinted with “Patented Dec 20, 188?”

Also, does anyone know what the last character is supposed to be? I’m curious but can’t figure it out.


image: IMG_3138.jpg


image: IMG_3139.jpg


Log in to reply   6 replies so far

I can’t help you with the identification of the font, but the last character is the British Pound Sterling mark.

John Henry

This font is one of 17 designs that were die-cut (not pantograph-routed and hand finished) and was issued by William Page as No. 500. A more appropriate name would probably be Latin Bold.

The patent date on the shoulder is from the Page stamp. This makes the Sterling mark a little curious, but perhaps Page cut that character so it could be marketed and sold through Haddon in England.


I’m curious when Britain changed their pound sterling character, then — this looks nothing like the current one — unless you look at it in a mirror. I was thinking it is a symbol for some other currency but I have no idea what. It bears a slight resemblance to the Netherlands Antilles Guilder symbol or the Indian Rupee.

I had a font of wood type that very closely resembled this or was the same, but it lacked that special character.


Here’s more pics of Page die cut fonts with stamp

I have a few fonts with the funny character,,,never been able to figure out what it is, either!


This is all very interesting. I agree that the Sterling mark (if that’s what it is) is oddly shaped given what I’m used to. Has anyone seen printed material with this symbol in use?

Knowing that it’s William Page, I was able to search the patent date of December 20 and found the patent which I found interesting:


Does anyone know where might I find a specimen that shows these 17 designs? A google search turned up some information at Unicorn Graphics (http://www.unicorngraphics.com/wood%20type%20museum.asp), but I didn’t find the specimen of type, just those of die-cut ornaments.


That symbol has always interested me, too. I show it in Lyons’ fonts, No. 503 & No. 504, here:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/3952492297/in/album-721576224...
Sample letters of all seventeen styles are shown in Kelly, on page 146.
In Page’s ca. 1890 specimens, of his “New Process” type, he shows the No. 503 character used prior to the figures 355, on page 41, but it is not mentioned in the scheme, at the beginning of the book. I always thought it was a symbol for either pound or peso, but definitely a monetary symbol.
Note, on the URL page, above, of Number 504, that the symbol (shown following the zero) is drawn opposite to the others, looking more like a pound sign?
Dave Greer