TeX - LaTeX Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of TeX, LaTeX, ConTeXt, and related typesetting systems. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I would like to define a math operator Homöo, but when I try


I get Homo.

How can I use German umlauts in DeclareMathOperator?

(If it's not possible at all: What should I do instead?)

share|improve this question
up vote 15 down vote accepted

The text in the second argument of \DeclareMathOperator is typeset in a special variety of \mathrm, so - produce a hyphen, for instance, not a minus sign. Fragments of words like yours can be dealt with by saying


assuming a non fancy setup for fonts.

share|improve this answer
@moose Moreover, you should use \textnormal if you need kerning in the operator. I recently needed it for the variance to get correct kerning between V and a: \DeclareMathOperator{\Var}{\textnormal{Var}}. – Manuel Jan 13 '14 at 23:27
@Manuel: Thank you for the hint. When do I not need kerning in the operator? (For everybody who has to look up kerning: Wiki-article about kerning, one example) – Martin Thoma Jan 14 '14 at 6:22
@moose I just wrote an example, if you use \DeclareMathOperator{\Var}{Var} and compare it with the one I used, you will see the difference, the V letter has space under it to put the lowercase a. There is no general rule for kerning, you need it when two letters can be kerned. – Manuel Jan 14 '14 at 11:17
@Manuel, I was asking the other way around: Is there any reason not to use \textnormal? – Martin Thoma Jan 14 '14 at 12:24
@Manuel I get no difference between \operatorname{Var} and \operatorname{\textnormal{Var}} – egreg Jan 14 '14 at 12:34

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.