I would like to use Times New Roman as the default font for the text in a book I have put together.

After checking this site, it seems that all I have to do is type \usepackage{times} in the preamble.

I did this and it seems to work.

My question is: Is there anything else (or something different) I should invoke in the preamble? I ask because the post which instructed to this this was rather old and I want to make sure there is nothing different I should be doing. Finally, may I assume that the Times New Roman font I use is in the public domain and am free to publish the said book with the said Times New Roman font? How may I check to be certain?

  • The only thing \normalfont is used for are footnotes and such. Commented Jul 10, 2023 at 23:08
  • I am not a lawyer and this is not legal advice but you certainly can't assume the font is public domain. Very little of a TeX distribution is public domain. LaTeX isn't public domain. What you probably want to ask is whether it has a licence which permits even commercial use. Even a commercial licence will typically allow you to use the software or font you license. Not even MS/Apple prevent people from using the OSs they purchase licences for. Who'd buy a font if they couldn't publish documents produced with it? Whether you can distribute the font is a different matter.
    – cfr
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 2:12
  • \usepackage{times} never produced font as Times New Roman, actually it produced the old format of Adobe Times font, also it supports only LaTeX-dvips-PS2PDF, if you use PDFLaTeX, XeLaTeX, etc. by default it's changed to Nimbus family
    – MadyYuvi
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 4:57
  • @MadyYuvi I believe what it actually used depended on your distribution and local settings because it is one of the 'core' PS fonts. It's handled in the font configuration. (I don't know what it did before that.)
    – cfr
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 5:58

3 Answers 3


You mention that you want to use Times New Roman font (from Microsoft) but when you use \usepackage{times} then you use Times font, not Times New Roman. It is explained more exactly below.

Times font was designed by Stanley Morison in 1931 for purpose of the newly established newspaper Times. This font has been digitized later by more font foundries:

  • Microsoft: Times New Roman, it is part of Windows system and typographers say that it is the worst re-implementation of Times. It isn't free.

  • Adobe: Font Times, it was a part of each PostScript RIP designed by Adobe. It belongs to 35 standard fonts in PostScript. They are not free. If you buy a device with PostScript RIP, then you can use them at this device. Documents needn't to download the font because the font is ready to use when printing by PostScript RIP. It is good implementation of Times, but it was originally designed in Type1 PostScript format (today obsolete) and mostly without accented Latin letters.

  • URW: Nimbus Roman No9, it is relatively good re-implementation of Times. It is part of Ghostscript, a free implementation of PostScript RIP which is running in Linux systems (not in printing devices). If you are using TeX with standard configuration then \usepackage{times} downloads this Nimbus Roman No9 font, because the configuration is based on free fonts and old TeX engines uses their individual font world independent on fonts in the system. So, even if you happen to be using MS Windows with Times New Roman font, it isn't used.

  • TeXGyre: Termes, it is very good implementation of Times. It is free and it was available in new (and now commonly used) format OpenType. It is part of typical TeX distributions (for example TeXlive). If you are using a Unicode-aware TeX engine (LuaTeX, XeTeX), then Termes is best choice for using Morison's Times font.

For example, if you are using OpTeX, then the preamble looks like:




The second one is only alias to Termes and you can re-configure it if you buy a non-free re-implementation of Times. But there is no reason to do it because Termes is very good. Much better than Times New Roman, for example.

If you are using LaTeX with Unicode-aware TeX engine then you can use \usepackage{fontspec} and then set Termes by \setmainfont in your preamble.

  • 4
    Why Times New Roman "is most bad re-implementation of Times"?
    – Stephen
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 7:07
  • 1
    @Stephen for comparison: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/220976/times-font-variation Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 8:20
  • 9
    The Times started in 1785/1788, so was not "newly established" by 1931
    – Henry
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 9:40
  • 1
    Re. the TeX/technical side: this is a really good answer and I should have read it before writing half my comment above! (I wouldn't call type 1 fonts 'obsolete', though I understand the view.)
    – cfr
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 14:28

The more up-to-date package for a Times-like font is newtx, which is a successor to times through a series of intermediate and now obsolete packages.

The fonts upon which newtx is based are available for unrestricted use (although the package can support some non-free fonts.) Refer to the package documentation for more specific details of the fonts and pointers to license text.

Depending on which engine you use and on what features you are after, various invocations are possible (see documentation), but the simplest is just to do

  • If times is obsolete, would you know why I am still able to load it successfully? Should I never use it? Thank you.
    – DDS
    Commented Jul 10, 2023 at 23:20
  • 2
    @jean-marie - It's always possible to load a package that's considered obsolete, but these packages are not maintained and may have bugs or conflicts with other code. When an obsolete package has a successor package, you should use the successor. You can find these details in CTAN.
    – John
    Commented Jul 10, 2023 at 23:25
  • 1
    @John Thank you for your follow-up comment.
    – DDS
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 0:50
  • @DavidCarlisle Thank you for adding information on the most up-to-date packages.
    – DDS
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 1:18

You can use the fontspec package to use any Windows or system Font! Here is a MWE of it’s usage:


\setmainfont{Times New Roman}


Times New Roman font!


This post shows some of its capabilities!

The only caveat with this solution, is that fontspec has to be run under LuaTeX or XeTeX and not regular LaTeX, but at least it works!

Regarding the usability of Times New Roman... I honestly don't know, I'd assume is good to use as is since it's packed with all Windows builds but... maybe ask the Law Stack Exchange?

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