These fonts are also from Northern Italy. Bembo is a revival of the work of another printer, Aldus Manutius in the 1500s. Manutius was a major influence on type design as we know it. This continued the trend toward a more intellectual development of type away from its calligraphic roots.
- Narrower caps: But not by much
- Larger x-height: This tends to make these fonts look a bit more contemporary to our eyes.
- Ascenders taller than the caps: This is the first case where this feature became part of our font design lexicon.
- Rigidly parallel stems: This is still not rigidly true as we will find in the more geometric designs much later on.
- The horizontal line: Whereas the Venetian styles used the inclined line, the Aldine used the horizontal.
- More regular serifs: I would say they are more predictable, but they are not purely symmetrical yet. Look at the A, G, f, & r.
- Sheared apexes: AMNVW
Most of the life and playfulness of the Venetian has been ironed out. The term stately is used of these fonts—cool, formal, and sober. I find them clean & crisp. The English used these fonts as a base for what they called Old Face.
- Venetian: the beginning of our fonts, Nicholas Jenson (bergsland.org)