Re: Documentation (was Re: [OS X TeX] Kanbun (漢文) and French...)

Jonathan Kew jonathan at
Sat Jan 3 12:11:24 EST 2009

On 3 Jan 2009, at 09:50, Jean-Christophe Helary wrote:

> On samedi 03 janv. 09, at 17:52, Jean-Claude DE SOZA wrote:
>> It's normal, Lucida Grande doesn't have the Japanese ideograms.  
>> Open the Font Book (Livre de polices) and choose Hiragino Kaku  
>> Gothic Pro and you'll see all the ideograms plus the Roman  
>> characters.
> Why is it necessary to specify a font ?

Because xetex is not responsible for making typographic design  
choices, only for carrying out the instructions of the document author/ 

> If I already set the document class (article here) the default  
> behavior is to use a certain font (category ?) Why is XeteX not  
> automatically providing the fonts that cover the characters I used ?

The default is to use Computer Modern, which contains only a very  
limited selection of characters. Other classes might default to fonts  
with a larger repertoire (such as Latin Modern), or additional  
packages could change the defaults to entirely different styles, but  
there will always be the possibility of entering characters in your  
document that aren't present in the default fonts. If you want such  
characters to appear, you have to specify an appropriate font for them.

> I have just created (copy-pasted from the XeteX CJK sample) a new  
> command:
> \newcommand{\cjk}[1]{{\fontspec[Scale=0.9]{Hiragino Mincho Pro}#1}}
> for Japanese strings that appear within French sentences.
> But how can I be sure that the font I set for CJK is of the same  
> style as Times (the one I choose as the main font) for ex ?

It's not clear to me what it would mean for a Japanese font to be "of  
the same style as" a Latin one.

> How can I be sure that the scaling is correct ?

Fontspec's [Scale=MatchLowercase] option might be worth a try, but  
ultimately this is not something that can be reliably automated; only  
a designer's eye can judge what is a harmonious combination of fonts  
in various script, styles, and sizes.

Sorry, xetex does not attempt to make any of these typographic  
decisions for you, to guess what might look OK on the page. It uses  
exactly the fonts that your document (and classes/packages) specify,  
and if those don't include some of the characters you need, then  
they'll be missing from the output. (Provided TeX's \tracinglostchars  
parameter is positive, there should be warnings in the log to inform  
you of this.)


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