The Hypnerotomachia Poliphili first appeared in print in 1499. It was not long before it acquired a reputation as a masterpiece, thanks in part to its balanced typography combined with superb woodcuts. Specially for this edition of the dream allegory, master printer Aldus Manutius had a new typeface cut, one of the first true ‘old face’ types.
In 1923 this typeface was taken up by Stanley Morison for the Monotype Corporation, enabling the publisher of De Droom van Poliphilus to emulate the original work down to the smallest detail. Not an average job for a publisher trying to earn a living. Within the margins of restrained book design the designer has succeeded in making her mark with some nicely poised typography on the cover of both the Hypnerotomachia and the separate volume of commentary. The brilliant colour combinations in cloth, endpapers and dust jackets reinforce the cohesion of the two differently-sized books. In short, a classic example of the best design.