Picture it: Greece, 480 BC. Italy, 180 AD. France, 1832. If you’re picturing them through the movie world, your inhabitants probably speak with British accents. And, in the movie world, surrounded by intricately constructed scenery and pain-painstakingly accurate props, it kind of works.
The same is true for Trajan on movie posters. Already full of character, the font manages to further absorb its surroundings and treatments to somehow work no matter the situation. From its 113 AD inspiration to its 1989 design to today, the font is a chameleon of time and place.
While it may have been supplanted by Gotham as “the everything font,” there’s no doubting Trajan’s continued strength. If you’re attracted to go all caps with a serif but want something of slightly different character, here are 10 great alternatives.
Sharing its Roman Empire roots, Jupiter is like a sharpened version of Trajan. It looks fantastic whether wielded alongside a broadsword or a butcher knife. To be even further impressed, explore the font’s incredible Alts and Ligatures.
Uncommonly top-heavy, letters like S and B take on a seemingly upside-down balance across the font, making Weiss unexpectedly receptive to a spooky, unnerving treatment.
Warnock‘s wedge serifs add action to the font’s elegance.
Likewise, the precise Palatino has a certain stoic quality.
Ivory (NoSwashes) flows with elegance. When paired with its swashes, the font seems ready-made for Victorian romance.
For further elegance, consider the refined brilliance of Requiem. Not to be outdone by Ivory’s swooshes, Requiem has a decorative “cartouche” set. Even discussing such an august font makes you feel as if on the set of Frasier.
From the extravagant to the everyday, (Adobe) Garamond is a commonly-found font whose occasional misuse does not cancel out its enduring greatness. A highly-legible font of interesting slopes, treat Garamond well, and it will return the favor. For a FREE alternative, enjoy EB Garamond.
Many of these fonts have additional weights and endless treatments, so this is only the beginning of the vast options that await you within reach of Trajan’s charm.
Do you have a different favorite alternative? Or, do you have a favorite poster showcasing the perfect use of an all caps serif font? Better yet, do you think an alternative to Trajan is even necessary?