I have a title in my document like this:

Birds of South America

“Birds”, “of”, and “South America” are each in different fonts and sizes, like this:

{\ssc Birds}
{\cga of}
{\ssd South America}

When I tried vertically centering the text, it centered them on the center of the whole height of the words. This does not look right though, because the lower-case letters are the strongest elements.

| |
| | _  ← Vertically centered text centers text at the middle of the upper-case letters.

How can I vertically center each of these parts, where the center line is at the middle of the short lower-case letters?

| |
| | _
|_||_| ← I need to place the vertical center line at the middle of the short lower-case letters in each word.
  • If you don't need a fully automatic solution you can tweak the vertical distance manually using raisebox: \raisebox{2pt}\hbox{of}
    – Marco
    Commented Jun 14, 2013 at 0:43
  • Please add a MWE. You can also use \smash to ignore the height of a particular box.
    – Aditya
    Commented Jun 14, 2013 at 1:33

1 Answer 1


One option is to use location=middle option of \framed.

\showboxes % For visual debugging



\dontleavehmode % Needed whenever you start a line with a \hbox
\middleframed{\ssc Birds}
\middleframed{\cga of}
\middleframed{\ssd South America}


which gives

enter image description here

(Remove the \showboxes to get rid of the visual debugging information)

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