Modern Lower Case

 [ ] aeoe( )  j       e          mids     '  ?   !    ;     fl 
&bcd isfg ff
ffilmnh oyp,wensems
zvutthicksar q:quads

This layout is given by Lawrence Wallis, A Short History of the English Case Lay, in Print in Britain (Nov 1959) as representative of the lower case lay in general use at the time, allowing for local differences. Because the numerals are stored in the Upper case, and not the Lower, the lay differs somewhat from that shown, for example, by Tarr in 1945. However, it is almost identical to that used by Heffer up until the 1970s, apart from the position of the mid spaces (Heffer used the mid box for thins) and the em spaces (Heffer had two dot leaders and no ems). Both lays have k in the lower case, q next to r and j next to e, whereas Southward felt a lot was to be gained by having q and j near to u, and x next to e, so presumably that improvement was not widely taken up by the trade, although Oldfield in 1890s shows q where thins are, and this was being repeated by Southward in eg 1933.

The companion Upper is the English Modern lay. The empty configuration is that of Johnson (1824), and eg Southward (1882), Miller & Richard (1897), Stephenson Blake & Co (1922), American Printing Equipment & Supply Co. (1987) etc.

Other empty cases
ie with the boxes left blank
Other type layouts
ie with characters assigned to boxes
Full Index of layoutsGlossary of terms usedSources of the layoutsIntroduction
Quantities in a fount of typeQuantities in a case of type
Notes about Job
and Double Cases
Notes about Upper casesNotes about Lower casesAlembic home page

This page was written in 2004 by David Bolton and last updated 14 March 2013.