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I'm using TeX Live (Debian) with betababel to insert ancient greek text. Since I'm required to use a sans-serif font, I wanted to change the greek font with the psgreek package to find one that fits Helvetica.

For some reason, choosing a font from psgreek has no effect at all.

\documentclass[a4paper]{article}
\usepackage[utf8]{inputenc}
\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}
\usepackage[polutonikogreek, english]{babel}
\usepackage[greek]{betababel}
\usepackage[
regular
%garamond
%oxonia
%oldface
%milan
%kerkis
%cmr
%cmss
%cmtt
]{psgreek}

\begin{document}
Test.
\begin{betacode}
*e)ge/neto de! e)n tai=s h(me/rais e)kei/nais e)ch=lqen 

do/gma para! *kai/saros *au)gou/stou 

a)pogra/fesqai pa=san th!n oi)koume/nhn.
\end{betacode}
\end{document}  

Everythings seems to be installed correctly, no error message is shown. The document compiles without any problem, except it always shows the default greek font, whatever option from psgreek I coose.
Whether latex or pdflatex is used, makes no difference.

Anyone got an idea how to solve this? Thanks!

  • Welcome! Loading betababel after babel is probably problematic as it wants to pass options to babel. You might want to note that psgreek is available at ctan.org/pkg/psgreek since it is not part of standard TeX distributions. Is there any particular reason you want to use this rather than, say, one of the GFS fonts? (Anyway, CTAN is worth a look right now!) – cfr Oct 30 '16 at 23:50
  • Any particular reason to prefer beta code over other latin transliteration schemes? – erreka Oct 31 '16 at 7:14
  • I never really bothered using others than the default font, because I quite like it, so I've never come across the GFS fonts. But I'll have a look, if psgreek won't work at all … Beta code is just the first one I came in contact with. ;-) Writing directly in greek would be fine, but I'm working at university most times and need a method that doesn't require greek keyboard or utf8 support. – Julian Oct 31 '16 at 14:53
  • @Julian Why the UTF8 restriction in a university environment? Sounds odd... Any possibility of using XeTeX? – Dɑvïd Oct 31 '16 at 20:02
  • @Dɑvïd The restriction, IIUC, is that not all the computers in the Lab may have access to a polytonic Greek input method. – erreka Nov 1 '16 at 3:25
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If your goal is only to typeset your text with a sans font, and you don't mind the CM family, you may try this preamble:

\documentclass[a4paper]{article}
\usepackage[utf8]{inputenc}
\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}
\usepackage[polutonikogreek,english]{babel}
\usepackage{betababel}
\let\rmdefault\sfdefault

The trick is in the last line.

Both betababel and psgreek are rather old (2005 and 2007, respectively), and the babel/greek interface has changed in the meanwhile, so they need a major overhaul. Please file a bug report to the corresponding maintainers.

As a workaround, you may try to add the textalpha (for LGR encoding) and substitutefont packages and say, v.gr.

\substitutefont{LGR}{\sfdefault}{hml}

to setup the milan Greek font, which is the only "sans" font in the psgreek bundle, afaik.

\usepackage{textalpha,substitutefont}
\substitutefont{LGR}{\sfdefault}{hml}
\begin{document}
With the LGR encoding:

\ensuregreek{>en >arq'h <=hn <o l'ogoc}

And with Beta Code:

\begin{betacode}
*e)ge/neto de! e)n tai=s h(me/rais e)kei/nais e)ch=lqen 

do/gma para! *kai/saros *au)gou/stou 

a)pogra/fesqai pa=san th!n oi)koume/nhn.
\end{betacode}
\end{document}  

You may need to fix a small bug in betababel.sty, line 386: it says

      $ifnum$suffix@=58$@ddToText{s}%

it should say

      $ifnum$suffix@=58$@ddToText{c}%

Output:

BetaBabelMilan

  • Wow, using \let\rmdefault\sfdefault with Helvetica really did the trick! Thanks! @cfr I think, I'll go without psgreek and use the GFS fonts instead. Thank you guys! – Julian Nov 1 '16 at 11:43
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May I gently point out that package authors spend a great deal of time and effort to document their packages so that users can use them effectively? When something does not work, therefore, it is almost always a good idea to start by looking at the manuals of the packages you are using.

For the record, I'd never heard of betababel or psgreek before. So if I can identify a problem in your example code in 2 minutes by opening the documentation, you probably could have done the same thing in a fraction of the time it took to write the question.

Also for the record, yours is a far, far, far better question than many, especially most first questions. So this is really by way of expressing a general gripe.

betababel's manual notes the following on page 3:

Since betababel internally loads the babel package by itself, there must not be a \usepackage[...]{babel} command in your document preamble.

The manual totals a whopping 7 pages, including the abstract and contents on page 1 and the change log on the last 1.5 pages. So it is hardly in that class of manuals so overwhelming you need another manual to help you find your way through the first one.

EDIT

If you load the options for Babel as class options, betababel can still load babel as it wants. Alternatively, you can pass the options for babel as options when loading betababel.

I don't have psgreek. However, the Greek Font Society offers several options, some of which support Latin script as well as Greek.

For example,

\documentclass[polutonikogreek, british]{article}
\usepackage[utf8]{inputenc}
\usepackage[LGR,T1]{fontenc}
\usepackage[default]{gfsneohellenic}
\usepackage[greek]{betababel}

\begin{document}
Test.
\begin{betacode}
*e)ge/neto de! e)n tai=s h(me/rais e)kei/nais e)ch=lqen

do/gma para! *kai/saros *au)gou/stou

a)pogra/fesqai pa=san th!n oi)koume/nhn.
\end{betacode}
\end{document}

GFS NeoHellenic

  • Sorry, I know what you mean … Actually, loading the babel package in addition is a workaround for another problem (see here) and worked just fine. I now defined the language to be used as a \documentclass option, like suggested by babel's manual: \documentclass[a4paper, polutonikogreek]{article} But the original problem of psgreek doing nothing remains. – Julian Oct 31 '16 at 14:43
  • You can pass the options to betababel as shown in the manual. But passing them as class options is generally recommended for Babel anyway. How did you install psgreek? Are the fonts installed correctly? – cfr Oct 31 '16 at 16:30
  • @Julian Please see edit above for an example with a GFS font. I don't have the psgreek package installed. But if you need it in particular, please explain how you installed it. – cfr Oct 31 '16 at 23:37
  • That double call to polutonikogreek and greek doesn't make much sense; that's why I fear the betababel UI is messed up. – erreka Nov 1 '16 at 0:35
  • @wicho Yes, I think you may be right about that. In fact, betababel is passing greek to babel anyway. Do you know what Babel does if both greek and polutonikogreek are passed? (I'm assuming here that the OP has teubner.sty. If not, it passes polutonikogreek instead.) I guess the question is why the OP wants to pass polutonikogreek to Babel here. Maybe. (I don't know anything about typesetting Greek, so maybe this is obvious.) – cfr Nov 1 '16 at 0:53
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I'm aware this does not directly answer the question, and involves using Unicode, which apparently is not possible ... but XeLaTeX would be so much easier, e.g.:

\documentclass[12pt]{article}
\usepackage{fontspec,xunicode}

\newfontfamily{\Gksf}{Gentium Plus}
\newfontfamily{\Gksa}{Fira Sans}

\begin{document}

Serif (Gentium Plus):\\
{\Gksf Ἐγένετο δὲ ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις ἐκείναις ἐξῆλθεν δόγμα παρὰ Καίσαρος Αὐγούστου ἀπογράφεσθαι πᾶσαν τὴν οἰκουμένην.}

Sans (Fira Sans):\\
{\Gksa Ἐγένετο δὲ ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις ἐκείναις ἐξῆλθεν δόγμα παρὰ Καίσαρος Αὐγούστου ἀπογράφεσθαι πᾶσαν τὴν οἰκουμένην.}

\end{document}

Producing:

Greek screenshot

Posted just in case OP's restrictions might be relaxed.

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