After a day of struggle I managed to install the full family of MinionPro font on LaTeX. After an hour of googling I cannot figure out how to use the medium (semibold) font. Ideally I would have something like a \sb command, eg., {\sb This is medium bold.}.


4 Answers 4


Here's a fontspec solution, which needs XeTeX or LuaTeX:

        {Size={-9},Font=* Caption},
        {Size={14-24},Font=* Subhead},
        {Size={24-},Font=* Display}
]{Minion Pro}
        {Size={-9},Font=* Caption},
        {Size={14-24},Font=* Subhead},
        {Size={24-},Font=* Display}
]{Minion Pro Semibold}
\newcommand{\blah}{Once upon a time, 
    \textit{in a distant
    galaxy} called \textbf{Ööç},
    there lived a computer
    named {\bfseries\itshape R.~J. Drofnats.}\par}


  1. Text courtesy of Prof. Knuth.
  2. I've included the SizeFeatures just for illustration
  3. I should have (perhaps) used Minion Std Black for the bold version of semibold; "this is left as an exercise for the reader".

Here's the result (with XeLaTeX):

enter image description here


I assume you have set up the semibold variant like

      <-> T1--Adobe-Minion-Pro-Semibold

in an .fd file. Then you can define a user interface for it like



A good description of all that is the Font Installation Guide.


I’m a few years late, but your question came up in a search, it was a good one, and nobody really answered it. You asked, “Ideally I would have something like a \sb command, eg., {\sb This is medium bold.}.”

This should work with the OTF version of the fonts from the Minion Pro Complete Family Pack as of 2018, which have names like MinionPro-SemiboldIt.otf, but is untested. You might need to modify this for the version of the fonts you have. For example, if they’re in a directory rather than installed as system fonts, add the Path= key.

   Ligatures={Common, Rare, TeX},
   Numbers={OldStyle, Proportional},
   Extension=.otf ,
   UprightFont=*-Regular ,
   BoldFont=*-Bold ,
   ItalicFont=*-It ,
   BoldItalicFont=*-BoldIt ,

\DefaultFontFeatures{Scale=MatchLowercase, Ligatures=TeX}


This is a \textsb{sample \textit{text}}
\textbf{and \textit{another}}.

If you have the full family with its optical and condensed variants, setting them all up with fontspec would be very complicated, and you’d probably want to move all that setup into a file named MinionPro.fontspec. Then, your documents could simply load MinionPro.

It sets up NFSS-style \sbseries and \textsb{} commands. If you really, truly want a \sb that works like \bf, you can add \DeclareOldFontCommand{\sb}{\fontseries{sb}\selectfont}{\mathbf}, but this is obsolete.

If you optionally want to add commands such as this for the entire family, the official¹ series and shape names for the fonts in the Minion Complete Family Pack are:

  • Regular: {m}{n}
  • Regular Italic: {m}{it}
  • Semibold: {sb}{n}
  • Semibold Italic: {sb}{it}
  • Bold: {b}{n}
  • Bold Italic: {b}{it}
  • Condensed Regular/Medium Condensed: {mc}{n}
  • Condensed Regular/Medium Condensed Italic: {mc}{it}
  • Semibold Condensed: {sbc}{n}
  • Semibold Condensed Italic: {sbc}{it}

The “LaTeX Font Installation Guide” adds two additional weights, mb for Medium (between Regular and Semibold) and db for Demibold (between Semibold and Bold). Since there are separate Regular, Medium and Semibold weights, you’d want to use {mb}{n} for Medium and {mb}{it} for Medium Italic. I’d recommend that, if there’s only one weight in between Regular and Bold, you label it {sb}, as for example Computer Modern Demi does.

You would select caption, subhead and display either as separate font families or as size features. Condensed could also be its own set of font families, so that \textbf{} and so on don’t uncondense the font.

Finally, be aware that many people recommend against using multiple weights of the same font within the same document, and would suggest that you instead choose either Minion Pro Bold or Minion Pro Semibold as your bold font.

¹ The fontspec manual and “LaTeX2e Font Selection” documentation both recommend using the schema from The Latex Companion, by Frank Mittelbach and Michel Goossens. It is on page 414 of the second edition.

  • 2
    This is a very good explanation, nice!
    – Tobias
    Dec 14, 2019 at 10:59
  • How make FontFace works with SizeFeatures?
    – juanuni
    Feb 6 at 7:06
  • @juanuni You would use something like FontFace={sb}{n}{Face={*-SemiBold}, SizeFeatures={...}}. See section 4.3 of the fontspec manual.
    – Davislor
    Feb 6 at 11:46

If you want to use mainly the semibold instead of the bold, use the following fontspec (in XeTeX or LuaTeX):

BoldFont={* Semibold}


        BoldFont={* Semibold},
]{Minion Pro}
This is a \textbf{sample}

However, it looks like fontspec automatically selects the semibold option. You can check the difference with

BoldFont={* Bold}

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