Use of graphemes æ and ǽ
  • I am preparing a laminated Mass card, in modern notation, for congregational use, containing Latin ordinaries. I want the contents to conform, as far as possible, to what is in our current hymn book. Briefly, the technique I am using is to download .gabc code from GregoBase, convert it to .ly code using the Ruby gem lygre/grely and produce the eventual output using Frescobaldi. Thereafter, everything will move into a DTP package. A certain amount of hand editing is needed in Frescobaldi. The grely/lygre output is very sparse. The grapheme æ comes outs out well enough in the eventual .pdf file when unaccented (sæculórum, for example) but, when accented (as in sǽcula) is bigger than the rest of the typeface. Does anyone have any ideas about this, please?

    If push came to shove, as we day in the North of England, I could get round this by abandoning the grapheme and substituting individual letters but curiosity makes me want to obtain a solution to the problem. The attached should make this clear.

    John Shipley

  • I would guess you are using a font that does not include the ǽ character, causing a substitution from a slightly dissimilar font.
    Thanked by 1John_Shipley
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,347
    The accented version is clearly coming from a san-serif font substitution. Continuousbass is exactly right. For reference (and because it is an excellent font family for chant and other music engraving) I note that Palantino Linotype has both the unaccented and the accented versions.

    It also appears that the (all caps) title "ASPERGES ME" at the top is from a different font (family) than the text. Where possible, one should use the same font family.
  • Don't know if it helps, but in Lilypond, you can use the following code to create accented æ and œ.
    aelig = \markup \combine "æ" " ´"
    oelig = \markup \combine "œ" " ´"
    Thanked by 1jchthys
  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,809
    I too have noticed this the accented AE being larger, I too suspect that it is using a different Font for that letter. Have not checked the unicode tables to check but they would show the characters available for each Font.
  • jchthys
    Posts: 22
    Definitely try Arthur Connick's solution – it will allow you a larger use of fonts! I personally like using Hoefler Text for liturgical music, but Palatino (as has been suggested) may also be a good choice. Alegreya is another option that you can (legally) download for free.

    Note that LilyPond lyrics are already quite large, so you may consider using \context { \Lyrics \override LyricText #'font-size = #-1 } in your \lyric{} block—especially if you use Palatino, as that is a particularly large font. Century Schoolbook (LilyPond's default) is not especially suited to Latin liturgical texts.

    CHGiffen: I think the header actually is in the same font family, though it is indeed very large and heavy.

    It looks like you're still in the process of creating and revising this file—when you are close to being done, do post a new draft (or PM me) and I can help proofread or give final suggestions!
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,347
    The Hmtl Unicode for ǽ is "& # 509 ;" or "& # x 1FD;" (in each case remove the spaces), the first being the decimal code 509, the second being the hexadecimal code 1FD.
  • New Century Schoolbook is still the best choice for "modern" music engraving, though I use a curated font set for my own historical work. I find, especially with LilyPond, that other fonts are far too light.
  • dboothe
    Posts: 30
    Lilypond's default text font has always seemed a bit heavy and ungainly to me, especially in titles, although it does work well for dynamic markings. I often use Linux Libertine, which is open source, and has an extensive character set.

    For a more "historic" look, I use one of Igino Marini's Fell revival fonts, usually English, occasionally French Canon. Unfortunately, they do not have the characters the OP needs.

    All these fonts are highly readable in Lilypond scores. They are not as light as some others, say Palatino or, especially, Garamond.