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font In computing, a set of letters, numbers, punctuation marks, and symbols of a given size and design that may be displayed or printed. Different designs are shown in the table. Most fonts are subject to copyright restrictions. The font size, i.e. the height of the printed letters and other characters, is specified in units called points, where 1 point equals 0.0138 inches in the US and UK.

Displayed or printed text can be enhanced using various features, including bold, italic, underline, outline, shadow, and color.

A font may be of fixed size when the shape is described by an array of pixels. Such fonts are commonly found in text terminals and printers where they occupy very little space in memory and require no processing or manipulation of the data. Fixed fonts provide the fastest printing and display but cannot satisfactorily be increased or reduced in size, i.e. scaled, unless they are represented by a scalable font. With a scalable font the character and symbol shapes are stored as a set of vectors and instructions. Because the data is described mathematically, it is possible to display and print such fonts to any desired size. The most common scalable-font systems are TrueType and PostScript fonts.

A font usually has proportional spacing, where each character and symbol is allotted a horizontal space commensurate with its width (as in the print you are now reading). In monospace (or fixed pitch) fonts, such as Courier, each character or symbol is allocated the same width, as on a typewriter. See also kerning.

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font1 / fänt/ • n. 1. a receptacle in a church for the water used in baptism, typically a freestanding stone structure. ∎ another term for stoup. ∎  a reservoir for oil in an oil lamp. 2. a fount: they dip down into the font of wisdom. DERIVATIVES: font·al / ˈfäntl/ adj. font2 (Brit. also fount / fount/ ) • n. Printing a set of type of one particular face and size.

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fontacquaint, ain't, attaint, complaint, constraint, distraint, faint, feint, paint, plaint, quaint, restraint, saint, taint •spray-paint • greasepaint • warpaint •asquint, bint, clint, dint, flint, glint, hint, imprint, lint, mint, misprint, print, quint, skint, splint, sprint, squint, stint, tint •Septuagint • skinflint • catmint •varmint • spearmint • calamint •peppermint • enprint • screen print •offprint • blueprint • newsprint •footprint • thumbprint • fingerprint •monotint • mezzotint • aquatint •pint • Geraint •Comte, conte, font, fount, pont, quant, Vermont, want •Delfont • vicomte • Frémont •piedmont • Beaumont • Hellespont •passant • poste restante •avaunt, daunt, flaunt, gaunt, haunt, jaunt, taunt, vaunt

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font. Baptismal basin for the consecrated water used during the Sacrament of Baptism. It is commonly formed from a large block of stone, hollowed out and elaborately carved with Christian symbols, supported on a short pier or cluster of colonnettes that are set on a stepped plinth or platform. Font-covers adorned with pinnacles and finials, raised on ropes and pulleys, and sometimes coloured, were not unusual in the medieval period.


Bond (1908);
Paley (1844)

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font1 receptacle for the water used in baptism. Late OE. font, var. of fant — OIr. fant, font — L. fōns, font- spring, FOUNTAIN, in spec. eccl. use fons or fontes baptismi water(s) of baptism.

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font2 var. of FOUNT2.