1.8.3 Fonts

This section presents the way fonts are handled, and how they may be changed in scores.

Fonts explained

Fonts are handled through several libraries. FontConfig is used to detect available fonts on the system; the selected fonts are rendered using Pango.

Music notation fonts can be described as a set of specific glyphs, ordered in several families. The following syntax allows various LilyPond feta non-text fonts to be used directly in markup mode:

a1^\markup {
  \vcenter {
    \override #'(font-encoding . fetaBraces)
    \lookup #"brace120"
    \override #'(font-encoding . fetaNumber)
    \column { 1 3 }
    \override #'(font-encoding . fetaDynamic)
    \override #'(font-encoding . fetaMusic)
    \lookup #"noteheads.s0petrucci"

[image of music]

A simpler, but more limited syntax is also described in Music notation inside markup.

Three families of text fonts are made available: the roman (serif) font, that defaults to New Century Schoolbook, the sans font and the monospaced typewriter font – these last two families are determined by the Pango installation.

Each family may include different shapes and series. The following example demonstrates the ability to select alternate families, shapes, series and sizes. The value supplied to font-size is the required change from the default size.

\override Score.RehearsalMark #'font-family = #'typewriter
\mark \markup "Ouverture"
\override Voice.TextScript #'font-shape = #'italic
\override Voice.TextScript #'font-series = #'bold
d2.^\markup "Allegro"
\override Voice.TextScript #'font-size = #-3

[image of music]

A similar syntax may be used in markup mode, however in this case it is preferable to use the simpler syntax explained in Selecting font and font size:

\markup {
  \column {
    \line {
      \override #'(font-shape . italic)
      \override #'(font-size . 4)
    \line {
      \override #'(font-family . typewriter)
        \override #'(font-series . bold)
      \override #'(font-family . sans)

[image of music]

Although it is easy to switch between preconfigured fonts, it is also possible to use other fonts, as explained in the following sections: Single entry fonts and Entire document fonts.

See also

Notation Reference: The Feta font, Music notation inside markup, Selecting font and font size, Font.

Single entry fonts

Any font that is installed on the operating system and recognized by FontConfig may be used in a score, using the following syntax:

\override Staff.TimeSignature #'font-name = #"Charter"
\override Staff.TimeSignature #'font-size = #2
\time 3/4

a1_\markup {
  \override #'(font-name . "Vera Bold")
    { Vera Bold }

[image of music]

The following command displays a list of all available fonts on the operating system:

lilypond -dshow-available-fonts x

The last argument of the command can be anything, but has to be present.

See also

Notation Reference: Fonts explained, Entire document fonts.

Snippets: Text.

Installed files: ‘lily/font-config-scheme.cc’.

Entire document fonts

It is possible to change the fonts to be used as the default fonts in the roman, sans and typewriter font families by specifying them, in that order, as shown in the example below. For an explanation of fonts, see Fonts explained.

\paper  {
  myStaffSize = #20
  #(define fonts
    (make-pango-font-tree "Times New Roman"
                          "Nimbus Sans"
                          "Luxi Mono"
                           (/ myStaffSize 20)))

\relative c'{
  c1-\markup {
    \sans sans,
    \typewriter typewriter. }

[image of music]

See also

Notation Reference: Fonts explained, Single entry fonts, Selecting font and font size, Font.

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Notation Reference