Apologies if this is covered in the manual, but the glossaries package is very expansive and I cannot seem to find this anywhere.

I am trying to use a single glossary for all items and acronyms, with descriptions. I followed the guides for mixed glossaries and abbreviations with descriptions and arrived at something like:




  description={fringilla a, euismod sodales, sollicitudin vel, wisi}]% description
  {ndl}% key
  {NDL}% acronym
  {nam dui ligula}% long form



Hello \gls{ndl}!

Goodbye \gls{ndl}!



This produces:


This is fine, and I prefer the long-short-desc style for in-text usage. However, I would like to have the acronyms printed first in the actual glossary, like:

NDL nam dui lingula, description


NDL (nam dui lingula) description

This is for a couple of reasons, the primary being sorting. For example, the acronym for the amino acid asparagine is the letter N, and so I would like the acronym to be explained under N and not A in the glossary. I am not particularly bothered about the formatting like brackets or emphasis at this point.

However, I am completely lost as to how I would do it. Switching to \setacronymstyle{short-long-desc} changes the order in-text (which I do not want), but keeps the order in the glossary (which I wanted to change):


Finally, I thought I might just forget about the descriptions, and just generate the list per the mixed glossary, as this seems to at least have the right order (minus the descriptions). To my surprise, switching to \setacronymstyle{long-short} removes the long acronym name instead of the description!


What next? Can I achieve what I want? And if not, do I need to manually remove the description from each item to go back to a basic acronym list?


  • First of all and because you already said it yourself: \setacronymstyle is for in-text-usage (so stick to your preferred long-short-desc choice) and not for the \printglossary command. There you control the output via the style option (which you choose as list). You may try different styles - examples can be found at here.
    – Venez
    Commented Dec 15, 2020 at 13:24
  • Right. Would you happen to know how can I modify the glossary style to fit my needs? Commented Dec 15, 2020 at 14:52
  • Therefore i would be good to know more about what you are trying to accomplish by merging acronyms and every other glossary entry. Because it's much more simpler to modify / fit a style for one category only. So ... any chance for separate glossaries?Or to ask in a different way: why a mixed glossary in the first place?
    – Venez
    Commented Dec 15, 2020 at 15:36
  • The reason was primarily that I had mostly acronyms with just a couple of non-acronym glossary items and I thought it was silly to create separate sections for them. However I am not sure if the source of the problem is in mixing the glossary with the acronyms. I did some fiddling around an no matter which glossary style I use, or if I use \printacronyms or \printglossary, or what acronym style I use, the only way I could get the acronym printed first was when I manually deleted the descriptions from the acronym definitions. Commented Dec 16, 2020 at 13:07
  • Which I would prefer to avoid, since I already wrote a file full of descriptions... I would be willing to let them go if it was possible by switching a package option rather than deleting them. Commented Dec 16, 2020 at 13:09


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