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Calligraphy uses written language to create visual art forms. It emphasizes the formal aspects of the written word and develops them into beautiful calligraphy shapes. Calligraphy is arguably best known for its modern and utilitarian applications, most notably the handwriting that adorns formal invitations. It also enjoys a rich tradition in East Asia and is an integral aspect of the fine arts legacy of many cultures worldwide.
The history of calligraphy in the East dates back to at least 200 B.C., a date that corresponds to the oldest documented artifacts featuring Chinese characters. In the centuries that followed, Chinese calligraphy spread throughout mainland Asia, leaving a palpable influence on the stylistic traditions of Japan and Korea.
Western calligraphy dates back to the Roman Empire (circa 600 B.C.), when Roman script was engraved into stone tablets. The pursuit of artistic perfection in written language gained momentum with the prolific reproduction of the Bible after the creation of the first printing press in the 15th century.
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