XeTeX, ligatures, en and em dashes and encoding mapping (was Re: [OS X TeX] )

William Adams will.adams at frycomm.com
Mon Oct 9 19:51:11 CEST 2006

On Oct 9, 2006, at 12:05 PM, Alex Hamann wrote:

> By comparing two different versions of the same paper I wrote (one  
> encoded in MacOSRoman and processed by latex, the other one in  
> utf-8 with Gentium fonts and processed with xelatex) that only in  
> the macosroman version typing --- would result in one long hyphen,

That's not a hyphen but an em-dash.

> while in the utf-8 version I would get three separate adjacent  
> short hyphens. What is the reason for that and how do I get the  
> long hyphen in the second document as well?

The conversion of ``---'' to — is done via TeX's ligature mechanism  
and Gentium doesn't have a ligature defined for this (nor for ``--''  
to an en-dash either I suppose).

You can enable this functionality by turning on the ``tex mapping''  

\font\x="Times New Roman:mapping=tex-text" at 12pt


William Adams
senior graphic designer
Fry Communications

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