Piranesi's Initials  discovered on the Plan of Nero's Nimphum (Fig.II and Fig.III) were engraved in 1756 for Le Antichit Romane Tom.I [Plate] XLI when his Roman architectural authority was under threat within the Grco-Romano debate of the mid eighteenth-century. By adding serifs to the E [1] he argued that the ancient Italians added serifs to the primitive Archaic Latin alphabet [2] which took 21 letters used in the ETRVSCAN alphabet. The unneeded Zeta [3] was moved to the end of the alphabet, and was replaced with Gamma [4] created from an Etruscan C. Following Romes conquest of Greece the Grca Y [5] was added to Classical Latin. V was used for U and the medieval ligatured double V became double-u 6. Eventually a curled minuscule ? became J and V became U following the post-Renaissance convention where I and U we're used as vowels, and J and V as consonants.



Piranesi's decorative [NER]ONIONIANA initial majuscules are included in the regular and bold weights of the ETRVSCA Sans font family. 


Piranesi's Initials