[XeTeX] Arabic and line spacing

Musa Furber musaf at runbox.com
Sat Jun 4 05:37:50 CEST 2005

On Jun 3, 2005, at 5:44 PM, Jonathan Kew wrote:

> On 3 Jun 2005, at 3:39 pm, Musa Furber wrote:
>> The line height between lines of Arabic text always a bit large. Is 
>> there any way to reduce this? I have tried 
>> \fontsize{point-size}{on-line-size}\selectfont, but it doesn't change 
>> anything.
>> Any ideas?
> In plain TeX terms, you need to override \lineskiplimit so as to allow 
> the nominal height and depth of adjacent lines to overlap slightly, as 
> the ascent and descent metrics of most Arabic fonts are such that 
> otherwise you get quite generous spacing.
> Not being much of a LaTeX user, I don't know what the appropriate 
> LaTeX idiom would be, but I expect one of the experts here can help.

I created three LaTeX files where I make a novice's attempt to change 
the leading with Times. There is one file for pdfLaTeX, another for 
XeLaTeX loading fonts with fontspec, and another for XeLaTeX using NFSS 

The pdfLaTeX and XeLaTex/NFSS versions show a slight change in leading.

The XeLaTeX/fontspec leading remains constant. Is this something that 
should be changed in Will's wonderful fontspec?

I wasn't able to produce an example where leading is small enough that 
consecutive lines start to overlap - something that will be useful to 
compensate for the x-height of Arabic without vowels.


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