Is there an overview available for Arabic fonts in LaTeX / XeTeX?

  • Ideally with output examples, so that it becomes clear how they compare.
  • So far, I'm aware of
    • Geeza Pro,
    • Amiri (and its variants),
    • Sheherazade and,
    • Al Nile.

But I assume there is much more out there.


In texmf-dist/doc/latex/arabi/user_guide.pdf, pages 50–51 give samples of fonts from Microsoft and from arabeyes.org (there are .ttf versions of the latter in Debian’s fonts-arabeyes package). And the documentation for dad shows examples of its output. Of course, with xetex and luatex, you can use any unicode, OpenType font, whether free or commercial. Here are some free fonts:

\newcommand{\sample}{\arb{الأفكار الخضراء عديمة اللون تنام بغضب}}% http://www.omniglot.com/language/phrases/colorlessgreenideas.htm
Amiri: \sample% arabluatex defaults to Amiri

\newfontfamily\arabicfont[Script=Arabic]{Aref Ruqaa}
Aref Ruqaa: \sample% https://github.com/khaledhosny/aref-ruqaa

Cairo: \sample% https://github.com/Gue3bara/Cairo

\newfontfamily\arabicfont[Script=Arabic]{Hussaini Nastaleeq}
Hussaini Nastaleeq: \sample% https://github.com/khaledhosny/hussaini-nastaleeq

Jomhuria: \sample% https://github.com/khaledhosny/Jomhuria

Lateef: \sample% http://software.sil.org/arabicfonts/

Mada: \sample% https://github.com/khaledhosny/mada

\newfontfamily\arabicfont[Script=Arabic]{Noto Kufi Arabic}
Noto Kufi: \sample% https://www.google.com/get/noto/

\newfontfamily\arabicfont[Script=Arabic]{Noto Naskh Arabic}
Noto Naskh: \sample% https://www.google.com/get/noto/

\newfontfamily\arabicfont[Script=Arabic]{Reem Kufi}
Reem Kufi: \sample% https://github.com/khaledhosny/reem-kufi

Scheherazade: \sample% http://software.sil.org/arabicfonts/

output of example

You can get a list of Arabic fonts available on your computer by typing fc-list :lang=ar on the command line, and you can search for all Arabic Google fonts.

Update: Here’s the brand new FiraGO, an extension of Fira Sans which adds support for Arabic, Devanagari, Georgian, Hebrew, and Thai to the already impressive range of Fira Sans:

\newcommand{\sample}{\txarb{الأفكار الخضراء عديمة اللون تنام بغضب}}
FiraGO: \sample% https://github.com/bBoxType/FiraGO

FiraGO sample

Update two: Here is the new Kafa Black:

Kafa Black sample

and its stylistic alternate:

Kafa Black with ss01

Update three: Recently, IBM Plex Arabic has joined the IBM Plex family:

sample of IBM Plex Arabic with calt

Update four: Here’s Aref Ruqaa compiled with lualatex-dev:

Aref Ruqaa with Harfbuzz renderer

Update five: Here are Cairo, El-Messiri, and Lemonada, by Mohamed Gaber:




Update six: Abd ElRady, by AhmED ElqSas:

Abd ElRady

| improve this answer | |
  • Is this LuaTeX? The Ruqaa is completely messed up, the Nastaleeq is a bit messed up as well. – Khaled Hosny Oct 3 '16 at 14:11
  • @KhaledHosny I just downloaded the latest version of those two fonts, recompiled the example, and replaced the image. No change to the Ruqaa, but the Nastaleeq looks better. (I don’t know whether that’s because of updates to the font or to arabluatex.) For anyone who wants to see how the Ruqaa looks in xetex, simply replace \usepackage[novoc]{arabluatex} with \usepackage[novoc,utf]{arabxetex}, and in the \sample command, replace \arb with \textarab. – Thérèse Oct 3 '16 at 19:22
  • The Nastaliq indeed looks better. – Khaled Hosny Oct 3 '16 at 20:23
  • This may yet be related to this issue: github.com/lualatex/luaotfload/issues/361 – Robert Alessi Oct 10 '16 at 9:07
  • 1
    One tiny bit of advice: with arabluatex it's better to type unicode Arabic as argument of the \txarb{} command. – Robert Alessi Oct 10 '16 at 9:10

In practical, real-world use, most authors today will save the source in UTF-8, load a TrueType or OpenType Arabic font, and compile with XeLaTeX or LuaLaTeX. A list of TrueType or OpenType Arabic fonts would not be specific to TeX or LaTeX. There are a few additions to that list that are worth noting for someone working in LaTeX, however.

In the Modern Toolchain

Khaled Hosny, the designer of Amiri, also created the Libertinus font family (based on free fonts by Philipp H. Poll), which make excellent companion fonts to Amiri—and, particularly relevant to LaTeX, include an OpenType math font, Libertinus Math. Hosny also made XITS Math, converted and extended the STIX fonts. Libertinus and XITS have the best support for Arabic and Persian mathematics of any free font, as well as other features most other math fonts lack, including support for \boldmath. (Dr. Hosny also collaborated on one other OpenType math font, Neo Euler, but it has none of these features and is incomplete.)

Classic Packages

There are some Arabic fonts for legacy packages, which you might still need to compile an old document, and I’ve occasionally still seen in use. Conventional seven- and eight-bit encodings were never very suitable for Arabic, but the arabtex package defined the xnsh14 pseudo-font, and also supported an older nash14 pseudo-font, as well as bold variants. The original sources for these are in METAFONT. The farsitex package is similar.

The arabi package offers different local encodings for Arabic and Farsi. There is a table in the manual of the fonts it supports. Of these, the Arabeyes Project fonts were also available in a PostScript format.

There were never any other Arabic fonts made specifically for TeX, at least that are still available from CTAN.

| improve this answer | |
\newfontfamily\arabicfont[Script=Arabic, Scale=1.0]{Amiri}

    النص بالعربية
| improve this answer | |
  • 2
    Welcome to TeX.SE! You can start every line with four spaces, so that line-breaks are preserved, and your code appears properly. Also, this answer highlights the “Amiri” font, which is already mentioned in the other answer (and in the question). Was there a reason you posted this? – ShreevatsaR Mar 7 '18 at 1:33

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