I want to page number the preliminary sections of my document in roman numerals, then use arabic for the rest, but I don't want the arabic numerals to start from 1. Since I don't know how long the table of contents and other preliminaries will be, I don't want to have to hard code the first page of the main section. Is there a way to prevent \pagenumbering from resetting, or to somehow direct \setcounter to "the page number of the last page + 1"?



%preliminary materials
This should be on page ``iii''.
Page ``iv''.
Page ``v''.

%main section
\setcounter{page}{6} % how can I set this without hard coding the 6?
Page ``6''.
  • That is doable but against all typographical principles. What do you need it for?
    – yo'
    Nov 20, 2013 at 18:32

1 Answer 1


You can define \pagenumberingnoreset:

\newcommand\pagenumberingnoreset[1]{\gdef\thepage{\csname @#1\endcsname\c@page}}

However, as I said in the comments, this is strongly against typographical principles, which is (one of) the reasons why it doesn't exist in LaTeX.

The definition above is based on the original definition of \pagenumbering:

  \global\c@page\@ne % this resets the counter
  \gdef\thepage{\csname @#1\endcsname\c@page}%
  • Thanks, that works. This is the requirement of my organization's internal publication department. In deference to typographic principles, I'll try to sneak the traditional page numbering past them, and save your fix just in case they insist. Thanks again!
    – Katie R
    Nov 20, 2013 at 18:49
  • This looks nice. I am having a slightly different issue than OP. I have to not show the page numbers on pages 1 and 2, and then put roman page numbers on page 3 as iii, but not as i. How can I do that?
    – user42459
    May 6, 2021 at 2:50

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .