Caslon Open Face
The lowercase 5 is a descending
figure. The calligraphic version
is made up of four strokes: a
vertical, a curve that begins at
the bottom of the vertical, a
completed bowl, and a horizon¬
tal that extends toward the right
from the top of the vertical. In
roman designs the vertical is
usually a hairline stroke, and
on occasion it is positioned at a
slight angle. In some designs
the horizontal is straight, and
in others it is subtly curved.
Note that the 5’s horizontal is
not necessarily the same weight
or style as the 2’s.
The shape of the bowl,
which is critical to the 5’s sta¬
bility, is always fuller than the
top portion of the character.
The end of the bowl might flare
slightly, as it would if it were
drawn with a flat-tipped brush.
It can also taper to a hairline, or
end with a ball- or pear-shaped
terminal. On rare occasions a
serif also ends this stroke.
к Latin Extra
The uppercase and lowercase
versions of the numeral 6 usu¬
ally are the same size and share
the same alignment. The ap¬
proximate proportions of the
lowercase о is a good starting
point for the design of the
bowl, but it can be either small¬
er or larger. In any event, the
bowl of the 6 must be substan¬
tial enough to support the top
of the figure, which might con¬
clude in a refined taper, a ball
or pear shape, or a slight flare
that echoes the end of a
Type designers must make
several subtle adjustments to
ensure that the 6 is balanced.
First, the bowl should almost
always be wider than the
ascending stroke, and its base
should always be slightly heav¬
ier than the top. Finally, the
spine of the 6 must support the
numeral’s vertical orientation.
Extended No. 2