The Didot family were active as designers for about 100 years in the 18th and 19th centuries. They were printers, publishers, typeface designers, inventors and intellectuals. Around 1800 the Didot family owned the most important print shop and font foundry in France. Pierre Didot, the printer, published a document with the typefaces of his brother, Firmin Didot, the typeface designer.
Firmin Didot – born 1764 in Paris, France, died 1836 in Mesnic-sur-l’Estrée, France – punch cutter, type founder, printer, publisher, author. Studied classical languages. 1783: cuts his first typefaces and reworks his father’s roman alphabets.
1797: is granted a patent for his developments in the field of stereotype printing. His typefaces are used in his brother Pierre Didot’s “Editions du Louvre” series. 1812: he is made director of the Imprimerie Impériale type foundry. 1823: one of his tragedies is performed at the Théâtre de l’Odeon.
Adrian Frutiger’s Didot font is a sensitive interpretation of the French Modern Face Didot by Firmin Didot.
* TYPOGRAPHY – An Encyclopedic Survey of Type Design and Techniques Throughout History by Friedrich Friedl, Nicolaus Ott (Editor), Bernard Stein, published by Könemann Verlagsgesellschaft mbH.