Josna Rege

324. Upper Case (and lower case)

In Media, Stories, Words & phrases, Work on April 26, 2015 at 3:12 am

atoz [2015] - BANNER - 910


In typography, upper-case letters are the capitals, lower-case letters, the small ones. The terms upper case and lower case are part of everyday parlance, but not everyone is aware that they derive from letterpress printing. Type, whether it’s made of lead or wood, is stored in typecases, shallow wooden tray-like boxes with compartments of various sizes for the various letters, symbols, and punctuation marks. There are different designs of typecase, the more common modern design in the United States being the California Job Case, the layout by which I learned to set and distribute type. But in the traditional design, the capitals and small letters came in two separate cases, the upper and the lower.


Divided upper and lower type cases for movable type

Divided upper and lower type cases for movable type

Tell Me Another (Contents to Date)

Chronological Table of Contents

atoz [2015] - BANNER - 910

  1. I find it quite amazing that so many little phrases we use come from the world of printing. I never realized that, Josna. Your posts have been little gems to me.

    • Glad you’re still enjoying them, Don. I’m losing steam here–and too much sleep!

      • I hear you, I’m so glad only w, x, y and z to go!!!!!

        • I’m afraid they’re getting sketchier as I go along. Came back from D.C. and stayed up till nearly 5 am getting just about caught up! Would like to end with a flourish, but in the middle of the last teaching week of the semester I can’t see how thats going to happen. Your stories have stayed consistently well-rereached and written–they will be nearly publishable as is, depending on how you decide to reframe them.

  2. This is great – upper and lower case coming from upper and lower case 😀

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