Matt Gilbert


Legibility and readability are two similar but distinct traits. Legibility is how well you see the letters, while readability is how well you read the words. Legibility is usually a concern when visibility is challenged, as in reading from a distance, in poor reproductions, or for people with poor eyesight. Readability, on the other hand, depends on how quickly a reader can recognize entire word-shapes or phrases, and how quickly and easier the reader reads a long passage of text.

After studying the history of legibility/readability experiments, both those done by scientists and those done by type designers, I designed two typefaces, Matthew Legible and Matthew Readable. Matthew Legible's open, simple forms are meant to increase legibility for general use (not for a specific purpose, such as screen-based legibility). Matthew Readable is designed to be read quickly and easily by experienced readers with good vision (readability for children just learning to read or for people with low-vision would require a different design).

The Font Files

You can download these fonts here, and use them however you wish. Note that Matthew Readable is an incomplete font, with only the lowercase set fully finished.


legRead_1.png legRead_2.png