. This word, literally “little vine,” was originally applied to small copperplate engravings used to embellish title-pages, it being a fashion of the French engravers to surround such designs with a running border of vine leaves. The word is still specifically applied to the small engraving on a title-page, though the vine-leaf border in such a position has long since been discarded. Generally, it includes any kind of engraving or ornament not enclosed in a definite border. This limita­tion of meaning is not, however, observed in typography. An ornament is none the less a vignette because it takes the form of a shield or a medallion or any other figure. The word “vignette” should not be applied to diagrams or illustrative designs or initial ornaments—but to a picture introduced solely for decorative purposes.

Taken from Gesta Typographica by Chas. Jacobi, 1897, page 33.

Italic Type


Wynkyn de Worde

John Baskerille


Joha Baptist Bodoni

The Mazarine Bible.

John Bagford

Printing was introduced into Scotland

William Caxton

The First Edition of the New Testament in Greek

Aldus Manutius

Italic Type


Wynkyn de Worde

Classical Names of Towns and Cities

The first almanack