47

How can I shrink the bullets of itemize without change its positioning and the centering versus the items? My code below show that behaviour in fact the two item underneath have a bullet shifted down respect the other two above...

\documentclass{book}


\begin{document}

\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}

\renewcommand\labelitemi{\tiny$\bullet$}

\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}

\end{document}

3 Answers 3

38

You can raise the bullet to your liking. The following does that (to the extreme):

enter image description here

\documentclass{article}
\newlength{\mylen}
\setbox1=\hbox{$\bullet$}\setbox2=\hbox{\tiny$\bullet$}
\setlength{\mylen}{\dimexpr0.5\ht1-0.5\ht2}

\setlength{\parindent}{0pt}% Just for this example
\begin{document}

\begin{minipage}{0.3\linewidth}
\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}
\end{minipage}\begin{minipage}{0.3\linewidth}
\renewcommand\labelitemi{\tiny$\bullet$}
\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}
\end{minipage}\begin{minipage}{0.3\linewidth}
\renewcommand\labelitemi{\raisebox{\mylen}{\tiny$\bullet$}}
\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}
\end{minipage}
\end{document}

On the left is the default $\bullet$. The middle shows \tiny$bullet$ while the last shows a raised \tiny$\bullet$ to exactly the same vertical height as it should be for $\bullet$. However, as mentioned, this is a bit extreme. You could avoid all the length calculations and just use \raisebox{0.25ex}{\tiny$\bullet$} which yields a comparable positioning.

I would also suggest using enumitem which allows you to obtain a similar output using

\begin{itemize}[label=\raisebox{0.25ex}{\tiny$\bullet$}]
  %...
\end{itemize}
5
  • Why did not you put \relax after \ht2?
    – Aurelius
    Commented Jun 15, 2013 at 19:12
  • @FormlessCloud This is not necessary inside \setlength
    – yo'
    Commented Jun 15, 2013 at 19:46
  • @Werner, can you phrase your answer also in terms of \setdefaultitem?
    – einpoklum
    Commented Sep 19, 2015 at 10:12
  • @einpoklum: And what is \setdefaultitem?
    – Werner
    Commented Sep 20, 2015 at 20:24
  • @Werner: Oh, I'm sorry, I forgot to mention that: the paralist package's \setdefaultitem.
    – einpoklum
    Commented Sep 20, 2015 at 22:30
34

using \tiny shifts the math axis so the vertical alignment of the bullet, so what you want is not a smaller font but a smaller symbol in the same font set (or to raise the symbol by hand)

enter image description here

\documentclass{book}


\begin{document}

\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}

\renewcommand\labelitemi{$\cdot$}

\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}


\renewcommand\labelitemi{{\boldmath$\cdot$}}

\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}

\end{document}
1
  • Good answer too, but I chose the other because I can simply use the LaTeX's font size commands to chose how big make the bullets : )
    – Aurelius
    Commented Jun 15, 2013 at 19:15
28

The smaller symbol can be centered around the original math axis via \vcenter:

\documentclass{book}
\begin{document}

\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}

\renewcommand\labelitemi{$\vcenter{\hbox{\tiny$\bullet$}}$}

\begin{itemize}
\item One
\item Two
\end{itemize}

\end{document}

Result

2
  • 1
    This is the most straightforward answer in my opinion.
    – Brett
    Commented Jul 23, 2018 at 18:08
  • 1
    Nice answer. But I would suggest to use \scriptsize instead of \tiny because this will give a bullet that has the same size as a \textbullet with the lmodern package.
    – Max16hr
    Commented Mar 5, 2020 at 9:50

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