[texhax] multipage framed boxes?

Yuri Robbers yuri at deavolente.org
Wed Aug 10 16:59:22 CEST 2005

Hello all,

in a book I am currently working on, I use occasional intermezzos,
which, according to the publisher's instructions, ought to be framed in
boxes and/or set on a light grey background. Of course this is easily
accomplished by putting the intermezzo in a standard \fbox. The problem,
however, is that some of my intermezzos are longer than a page, in which
case \fboxes don't work.

I tried solving the problem using the various multipage equivalents of
the tabular envrionment, but that did not work (so far).

Several TeX-wizards have told me this is impossible, yet I refuse to
believe them, especially since I have seen these and similar tricks
being used in many TeX/LaTeX/ConTeXt documents. The multipage box with
grey background is a standard function in ConTeXt, so I think it should
be possible to implement it in LaTeX as well. Also, I have seen a pdf of
a "Beginner's LaTeX" document, which itself is written in LaTeX that
employs framed boxes that start on one page and end on another very
close to the ones I need (see the two attached pages), except that it
does not close the box at the bottom of the first and the top of the
second page.

Is there anyone that can tell me how to create such framed boxes? Even
perhaps the "incomplete" ones as in the attached documents? Or perhaps
just the grey background boxes as are being used in ConTeXt? 

And is it possible to typeset a text (e.g. "Intermezzo \the
\intermezzocounter: Great Apes") _in_ an opening of the right size of
the top line of an \fbox-like box? I imagine something like this:

--- Intermezzo 2.3: Great Apes ------------------------------------
|                                                                 |
| .... actual intermezzo text                                     |
|                                                                 |

Any help - even if it involves only a partial solution - is most
welcome. I am not afraid of doing some low level (La)TeX programming

Thanks and kind regards,
Yuri Robbers.
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