What is an “English serifed design”?

I am reading the book “Typography, Referenced: A Comprehensive Visual Guide to the Language, History, and Practice of Typography”, inside the author talks about a english serifed design which would be invented by Caslon IV. I quote him:

William Caslon IV, the great, great grandson of the William Caslon (72),
designed the first sans serif font, creating the English serifed
design. Many claim that the design for this sans is based on the Greek
lapidary letters of the fifth century {…}

okay, now I have tried to find what that mean concretely on Google but I find nothing, at best three pages of results, partly referencing the book itself.

Maybe someone here has some idea about what that means concretely?

Any hint would be great,


The wording of the quote seems off, but it is exactly what is written in the book.

However, Allan Haley, one of the authors of the book writes in a blog post:

…in 1816, William Caslon IV, the great, great grandson of the
William Caslon that gave us the English serifed design, was
experimenting with fonts and came up with the first sans serif

So it seems that a mistake might have slipped into the book and that the “English serifed design” refers to the popular Caslon typeface by William Caslon.

Two Lines English (pictured below), the first sans serif typeface, was created by William Caslon IV.

The Caslons were based in London.

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Source : Link , Question Author : Webwoman , Answer Author : curious

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