I have read that \ge and \geq are the same, but I have also seen \geqslant in various contexts before. What is the preference between \ge (AKA \geq) and \geqslant? Similarly, what is the preference between \le (AKA \leq) and \leqslant?

EDIT: I am aware that \le and \leq are the same, and similarly with \ge and \geq. My question is about the preference between using those and \leqslant & \geqslant.

  • Does this answer your question? Why does \leq show up as \le? (partial duplicate) – Dr. Manuel Kuehner Apr 1 at 18:46
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    it's just the difference between ≤ and ⩽ – David Carlisle Apr 1 at 18:50
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    asking for preference is like asking for a preference between red and blue, there is no general answer – David Carlisle Apr 1 at 18:51
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    I don't think so. I see both used interchangeably. I prefer the slanted one myself, but the default tex version (without ams fonts) is the non slant one with an end result that you see a compete mixture of both. – David Carlisle Apr 1 at 19:19
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    You can use the variant you prefer, so long as you always use the same across the whole document. You may even say in the document preamble \renewcommand{\ge}{\geqslant}\renewcommand{\geq}{\geqslant}, so you can use \ge or \geq and be sure you'll always come up with the same symbol. And this allows you to change your mind: commenting out those instructions, the symbols will change their shape at the next LaTeX run. – egreg Apr 1 at 19:45

The symbols \leq (\le) and \leqslant have exactly the same meaning; similarly for \geq (\ge) and \geqslant. The preference for one or the other is basically subjective, but this is also affected by the house styles of major publishers of mathematics, which presumably traces back to the founding editors of journals handled by those publishers.

The four commands representing forms with horizontal equal member are all defined in plain.tex, and brought from there into LaTeX. This was a Knuth decision; the reason isn't known, but may be a desire to minimize typing. The slant forms were added in amsfonts by "popular demand", i.e., author pressure.

All four shapes have unique Unicode ids. The slanted forms were added as part of the STIX effort, as requested by publishers.

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Taken from the answer to Why does \leq show up as \le?:

These symbols are defined in fontmath.ltx, part of the LaTeX kernel:


Meaning that \le is identical to \leq (a synonym). Same is true for \ge and \geq.

Taken from the answer to Slanted greater than and equal to, less than and equal to:

You need the amssymb package in order to use the \leqslant and \geqslant symbols.

My "answer" was before the edit to the question was made:

EDIT: I am aware that \le and \leq are the same, and similarly with ge and \geq. My question is about the preference between using those and \leqslant & \geqslant.

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  • This clarification is helpful as to how exactly these commands work, even if it did not answer my question completely. Thanks! – Mel Apr 2 at 23:37

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