Books and Printing and Mormons. Part 3.

When a typesetter/printer talks about space between lines in a book the classical term is leading (placing “leads” between lines). Expressed in points it will usually read larger than the font size. A 12/14 system means 12pt font, 14pt leading. In a book, the normal line length is called the measure. This may be expressed numerically. Like 10/1120. This indicates the book is typeset in a 10pt font, 11pt leading, 20 pica measure. A pica is 12 points (yeah, it’s not base ten folks). A pica is indicated by suffix pc, such as 33pc. 10pc = 120pt.

Printers use a mixed system of units and this varies with location in the world. The point system was invented in 1737 and then later reinvented with a different value. These were French efforts and Americans went their own way with a different value in 1886 and the British followed suit twelve years later. This solidified English measurement at 1pt = .013837inch. Roughly, that means 6pc = 1inch. There’s something called a “big point” that eliminates the decimal in the equation 1inch = 72.27pt. In big points (bp), 1inch = 72bp. Some other measurements one sees in printing are standard centimeters and en and em. The relation here is 1en = .5em. The em varies with the font and represents half the font size. So in a 10pt font, an em is 5pt. There are a couple of other measures that show up but I’ll skip them.

Next, a detour into some Mormon specifics.

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