Georgia is a transitional serif typeface designed in 1993 by Matthew Carter and hinted by Tom Rickner for the Microsoft Corporation, as the serif companion to the first Microsoft sans serif screen font, Verdana. Microsoft released the initial version of the font on November 1, 1996 as part of the core fonts for the Web collection. Later, it was bundled with Internet Explorer 4.0 supplemental font pack.
Georgia is designed for clarity on a computer monitor even at small sizes, partially effective due to a large x-height. The typeface is named after a tabloid headline titled "Alien heads found in Georgia". Georgia was part of Microsoft's core fonts for the Web package and is preinstalled by default on Apple Macintosh and Windows-based computers. It has found popular use as an alternative serif typeface to Times New Roman.
Although inspired by the need for, and providing clarity at low resolutions on the screen, Georgia is a typeface resonant with typographic personality. Even at small sizes the face exudes a sense of friendliness; a feeling of intimacy many would argue has been eroded from Times New Roman through overuse. This is as much testament to the skill of the typeface's designer, Matthew Carter, as it is to any intrinsic quality of the face's design, since the small pixel spaces of the screen can be a harrowing canvas for any type designer. In Georgia, Carter has successfully managed to create a typeface family which combines high legibility with character and charm.