[OS X TeX] Accented characters in Xe(La)TeX

Ross Moore ross.moore at mq.edu.au
Sat May 29 01:19:48 CEST 2010

Hello Clea,

On 29/05/2010, at 9:04 AM, Dr. Clea F. Rees wrote:

> Could somebody point me towards documentation explaining the way that
> Xe(La)TeX finds and uses fonts and/or typesets characters?
> I'm specifically interested in a couple of things:
> 1) persuading XeLaTeX to typeset accented characters correctly when
> using non-default fonts (e.g. ^W, ^Y, ^w, ^y, "W, "w etc. in
> Skia, Venturis ADF, Hoefler Text etc. as opposed to Latin Modern);

These are all Unicode characters, so provided the font supports them
and you have loaded   \usepackage{fontspec}
(which in turn calls    \usepackage{xunicode} )
then it should just work with the usual TeX accent macros:

   \^W \^Y \^w \^y \"W \"w  etc.

Of course you need to use  fontspec's  commands for
setting the fonts to be used in your document.

> 2) identifying which font files XeLaTeX is using in a particular run
> (pdfTeX gives at least some of this information e.g. it lists the TTF
> or PFB files it used but I don't know how to get XeLaTeX to do this);

XeTeX doesn't do it directly.
Rather it passes this task to the OS, which gets it from
  /Library/Fonts  just like any other Mac application.

> 3) understanding how to work out how to access particular features in
> OTF fonts e.g. OSF in Venturis ADF (as opposed to OSF in Skia which
> seems unproblematic), for example.

Join the XeTeX mailing list.
This is all discussed there, so you can find it in the Archives.


> I'd really like a pointer to some straightforward documentation.
> fontspec and the font-info are not giving me the answers I had hoped
> for!

The XeTeX list is the correct place for such a question.

> Thanks very much,
> cfr
> (And apologies for having so many questions and offering no answers!)

No apology needed for that.  :-)

Hope this helps,


Ross Moore                                       ross.moore at mq.edu.au
Mathematics Department                           office: E7A-419
Macquarie University                             tel: +61 (0)2 9850 8955
Sydney, Australia  2109                          fax: +61 (0)2 9850 8114

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