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I have seen the command a few times and I want to know what \lettrine does and whether you have to use a package in order for it to work.

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1 Answer 1

From the lettrine package documentation:

Adding \usepackage{lettrine} in the preamble of a document defines the command \lettrine, the simplest use of which is \lettrine{<letter>}{<text>}. It produces a dropped capital <letter> (2 lines high), followed by typeset in small caps, and the rest of the paragraph is wrapped around the dropped capital.

A little example:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{lettrine}
\usepackage{lipsum}

\begin{document}

\lettrine[lraise=0.1, nindent=0em, slope=-.5em]{V}{oici} un exemple \lipsum[2]

\end{document}

enter image description here

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Thanks! Drop caps are an essential feature of typesetting programs; I'm surprised LaTeX didn't have native support. –  rake Apr 20 '12 at 21:23

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