[Dev-luatex] letterspacing and (no) ligatures

William Adams will.adams at frycomm.com
Thu Feb 10 13:59:06 CET 2011

On Feb 10, 2011, at 7:56 AM, Taco Hoekwater wrote:

> On 02/10/11 13:53, Patrick Gundlach wrote:
>>>> * in pdftex, \letterspacefont does not disable the ligatures, but this is what happens in luatex.
>>> IMO that's a desireable behaviour, not a bug. See Bringhurst, Oliver Simon's _Introduction to Typography_ &c.
>>> A control to turn it off or on (defaulting to disabling the ligatures) would be okay, but I've had to put a lot of effort into turning off ligatures when letterspacing and it's a pain.
>> In older german texts ligatures are not letter spaced. For example:
>> B i s m a r ck
>> (the ck ligature is not seperated)
> Neither was ij in dutch, but ff was separated. Which just goes to show
> you that doing letterspacing automatically is hard....

ck and ij would be (like ae and oe) diphthongs --- linguistic constructs denoting specific sounds.

ff is a ligature --- the joining together of two or more characters for stylistic or technical reasons.


William Adams
senior graphic designer
Fry Communications
Sphinx of black quartz, judge my vow.

More information about the dev-luatex mailing list