Using the classicthesis package with unaltered margin settings for paper size A4 results in the following page layout


The right margin is visibly larger than the left margin. When finally printing and binding the document, the difference will be even greater because the shown page will be bound on the left side.

I know that I have not nearly as much experience in typography and layout than a professional, but looking through some of my books showed in general a different layout. Knuth, for instance, has almost the same margin left and right (close to 2cm left and about 1.9cm right). My final document has 3.3cm left and 6cm (!) right margin.

I'm not saying that this probably isn't okay, but it really looks weird to me. Are there better settings for A4 paper? I would rather prefer when the text is centered in the final printed and bound document.

  • 4
    Simple answer: The author of the package likes it. See the introduction of the manual for more information. Nevertheless, several of us have problems with the package. If you do not want to use it as it is, don't use it, but try to setup only those things you want to look similar to classicthesis. Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 12:21
  • 3
    The author obviously likes to add (longer) margin notes and so provide space for them. Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 12:32
  • 1
    ClassicThesis is an evil package ... don't use it. !
    – user31729
    Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 12:35
  • @ChristianHupfer What I like about the package is that it has already set-up most things I need. Is there any similar package where I don't have to set up all the things by myself?
    – halirutan
    Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 13:32
  • I think the idea is that, in the final bound and double-sided document, all three margins are roughly the same size. So: 2x (centermargin - binding correction) = outer margin.
    – Wiebke
    Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 18:53

1 Answer 1


The general and most accepted typographical consensus is that in two-sided documents when they are opened at a spread (left and right page) the outer and centre margins should be equal. As far as I can see from texdoc classicthesis the classicthesis class adheres to this. For more information on typographical layout try texdoc memdesign (warning: I'm the author).

  • Thank you for this answer. This makes sense and I'm seeing the point now.
    – halirutan
    Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 23:08

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