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Type Anatomy: Correct Term for Small Serif-Like Hairlines in Incised Lettering


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Typefaces that have their roots in incised or engraved lettering often have small thin serif like strokes at the end of the terminal.

For example Copperplate by Frederic Goudy (see image) and Sophia by Matthew Carter have such hairline terminals.

What is the correct term in English language for these terminals?



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Ralf Herrmann

I am not sure why you expect a dedicated term. It’s just serifs. I don’t see anything distinct that would require a different term. 

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@Ralf Herrmann, @Riccardo Sartori, thank you both for chiming in. I have heard the terms tiny or minute serif, and I have also seen it expressed in German language as “Endstrich”, which literally means end stroke, it would not have surprised me if there was some obscure type anatomy term describing this feature.


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