The H. Berthold type foundry, renowned for crafting high-quality typefaces, was founded in 1858 by Hermann Berthold in Berlin. By 1918 the foundry had become the largest in the world, with offices in Stuttgart, St. Petersburg, Leipzig, Riga, Budapest and Vienna. Following World War II, Berthold actively developed proprietary typesetting equipment: in the 1950s, Berthold unveiled its first phototypesetting machine, the Diatype; and in the 1960s, Berthold introduced the Diatronic, its first keyboard-controlled phototypesetter for volume production.
Seneca was designed by Gustav Jaeger and released by Berthold in 1977.
It is a legible typeface distinguished by its emphasis on the ascenders and descenders.
Seeing relevance to his own work in a passage by German author Lucius Annaeus Seneca, Jaeger named his design after him.
Quadriga was modeled after the 18th century Dutch type cutter Johan Michael Smit’s “Dutch Antique and Cursive” used by the German Federal Printing Office.
Manfred Barz adapted the design for photocomposition. He eliminated size irregularities and evened out the weight contrast between the capitals and lower case letters allowing for the addition of complimentary bolder weights.