Rendering Historical Texts With OpenType Features

Below is a rendering of a paragraph taken from a book in the Daniel R. Coquillette Rare Book Room of the Boston College Law Library. The book is a collection of laws from the Massachusetts Bay Colony from 1692 to 1725 and the paragraph below is taken from “An Act against Jesuits and Popish Priests”, issued in 1700.

Image of the original text:

Below is the same text rendered in HTML using IM Fell DW Pica fonts, a revival of the seventeenth-century Fell Types by Igino Marini, with discretionary ligatures and the first stylistic set enabled to match the original. Note the use of the archaic form of the ‘s’ character, common in documents of the time:

An Act against Jesuits and Popish Priests

Whereas divers Jesuits, Priests and Popish Missionaries have of late come, and for some time have had their Residence in the remote Parts of this Province, and other His Majesties Territories near Adjacent; who by their Subtile Insinuations, Industriously labour to Debauch, Seduce and Withdraw the Indians from their due Obedience unto His Majesty; and to excite and stir them up to Sedition, Rebellion and Open Hostility against His Majesty’s Government

Screenshot of the paragraph above with OpenType features enabled:

Font used: IM Fell DW Pica by Igino Marini

Text source: Daniel R. Coquillette Rare Book Room, Boston College Law Library