Luc(as) de Groot and Cyrillic

Czar Peter the Great (1672 –1725) was a passionate lover of typography. He lived in Amsterdam for several months during 1697–98 to study printing, boat construction and, of course, Dutch women. Because of his obligations as head of the Russian state, his Dutch-born children were kept secret. They bore his name, but translated into Dutch, so “the Great” became “de Groot”. While Peter reformed the Russian script back home, his four Dutch children grew up in the beautiful Dutch coastal region where the flower bulbs industry was blooming.

One of Peter the Great’s grandsons held a print factory in Den Haag, and one of his many current descendants, named Luc or Lucas, shares his great-grandfather’s love of letters and is, not surprisingly, especially fond of Russian letters. His goal is no less than to continue the reform of the Cyrillic alphabet.

His efforts have not gone unnoticed. In 2005, Luc(as) de Groot was awarded two Diplomas in the TypeArt Cyrillic type design competition for the Cyrillic versions of the Calibri and TheAntiqua typefaces. During the 2008 typographic conference of the Association International Typographique (AtypI), held in St. Petersburg, Russia, Luc(as) was bestowed a rare medal for his contribution to contemporary Cyrillic type design.

Two diplomas for the cyrillic versions of Calibri and TheAntiqua

Two diplomas for the cyrillic versions of Calibri and TheAntiqua

Two diplomas for the cyrillic versions of Calibri and TheAntiqua

Luc(as) after receiving the medal for his contribution to contemporary Cyrillic type design. Photo © Simon Daniels