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Art of beautiful, stylized, or elegant handwriting or lettering with pen or brush and ink. It involves the correct formation of characters, the ordering of the various parts, and the harmony of proportions. In the Islamic and Chinese cultures, calligraphy is as highly revered as painting. In Europe in the 14th–16th century, two scripts developed that influenced all subsequent handwriting and printing: the roman and italic styles. With the invention of modern printing (1450), calligraphy became increasingly bold and ornamental.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on calligraphy, visit Britannica.com.