The STIX Fonts Project would provide consistent fonts for some things that are currently missing in LaTeX (e.g. lowercase \mathcal and \mathbb). The website says LaTeX support "will follow in 2011".

Until then is there some way to already use the fonts? Maybe using xelatex instead of pdflatex?

  • Now that the official LaTeX STIX package has been released, I was expecting to see this appear in TeXLive 2013, but I don't see it there. Is there a reason for this, or is it just matter of time?
    – acr
    Jul 22, 2013 at 17:01
  • @acr: You should probably ask a follow-up question, since few people will see your comment here (and I don't know the answer).
    – Caramdir
    Jul 22, 2013 at 20:48

3 Answers 3


LaTeX support for STIX fonts (Type 1 fonts, TFM files, support packages, etc) have been released few days ago (currently in beta), for people who want to use STIX but cannot/do not want to switch to a modern TeX engine.

  • 1
    I've installed them and the first experiment was good.
    – egreg
    Feb 5, 2013 at 17:11
  • caveat: the stix fonts have only one design size, so if anyone is expecting the slightly "exaggerated" shapes of smaller fonts in sub/superscripts (especially for digits), you won't get them. so these may fade away when a page is photocopied more than once. also, there's no separate and distinct math italic (cmmi rather than \mathit as applied to "words"), so be careful of your context when you use $a$ in the middle of a theorem. Feb 5, 2013 at 19:25
  • @barbarabeeton: The sizes of the script and script script fonts are set bigger than Computer Modern to accommodate for this (but STIX fonts never had optical sizes so this shouldn’t be totally unexpected). I don’t think the difference between cmmi “a” and cmti one is that visible either. Feb 5, 2013 at 19:36
  • thanks for the clarification, @KhaledHosny. (i'm aware of this, of course, but other people may not be, which is why i mentioned it.) the larger script-sizes could have side effects, especially with second-order scripts, on baselines when complicated math expressions are used in text; just keep a watch. regarding the "a", i actually have seen an example that was (for me) a head-scratcher; maybe it wouldn't be noticed by a real mathematician (i dropped out after advanced calculus). if i come across it again, i'll try to put it somewhere useful for reference. Feb 5, 2013 at 19:49
  • 1
    @jfbu: please provide any feedback you have through sourceforge.net/projects/stixfonts/support, so that it gets considered. Feb 5, 2013 at 21:56

Try the xits package:


Update: TeX Live 2010 (and newer) includes all the prerequisites. So instead of manually installing all the necessary packages, you can just install that. For XeTeX, the fonts (currently) need to reside in the system font directory for easy access, so you might have to copy the XITS otf files to ~/.fonts (or something similar).

Since it might help other people too, I'll post how I got the XTIS fonts to work. This was my first time installing TeX packages by hand, so if I did anything in a non-standard or incorrect way please correct me. (I made this post community wiki, so you can edit it.)

My system is Ubuntu 10.04 with TeXLive 2009 installed from the Ubuntu repositories. However something similar should also work on other operating systems (again, this is CW, so please add any instructions). I will install everything for use with XeTeX. There might be some changes for LuaTeX.

In the following, replace ~/texmf by the output of

$ kpsewhich --var-value TEXMFHOME


$ kpsewhich --var-value TEXMFLOCAL

First we will install current versions of some prerequisite packages.

$ mkdir ~/texmf
$ cd ~/texmf
$ wget http://mirror.ctan.org/install/macros/latex/contrib/fontspec.tds.zip
$ unzip fontspec.tds.zip
$ mkdir tex/xelatex
$ mv tex/latex/fontspec/ tex/xelatex/

The last two lines are necessary, because otherwise xelatex will select the old version already installed on the system, see Andrew's solution to his question.

$ cd ~/tmp

(or whichever temporary directory you like)

$ wget http://mirror.ctan.org/macros/latex/contrib/expl3.zip
$ unzip expl3.zip
$ cd expl3
$ tex l3.ins
$ mkdir ~/texmf/tex/latex/expl3
$ cp *.sty ~/texmf/tex/latex/expl3

$ cd ..
$ wget http://mirror.ctan.org/macros/latex/contrib/xpackages.zip
$ unzip xpackages.zip
$ cd xpackages/
$ tex xbase.ins 
$ tex l3keys2e.ins
$ mkdir ~/texmf/tex/latex/xpackages
$ cp *.sty ~/texmf/tex/latex/xpackages/

Next we will install unicode-math from it's git repository. Alternatively you can download it from CTAN.

$ cd ..
$ git clone "http://github.com/wspr/unicode-math.git"
$ cd unicode-math/
$ tex unicode-math.dtx
$ mkdir ~/texmf/tex/latex/unicode-math
$ cp unicode-math.sty unicode-math-table.tex  ~/texmf/tex/latex/unicode-math/

And now finally the XITS fonts. Instead of the git repository you can download them from http://github.com/khaledhosny/xits-math/downloads.

$ cd ..
$ git clone git://github.com/khaledhosny/xits-math.git
$ cd xits-math/

Now install the .otf files. I did this with Nautilus (the Gnome file manager), but I think you can just copy them to the ~/.fonts directory.

It only remains to tell TeX about the new packages:

$ sudo texhash

To test if everything went right, compile something like


\setmathfont{XITS Math}


$\mathcal A = α²$


with xelatex.

  • 1
    However $\mathcal a$ still only produces a normal (i.e. not calligraphic) "a". Did I do something wrong, or is this a limitation in the current version of the fonts?
    – Caramdir
    Jul 31, 2010 at 17:16
  • Note all of this is installed by default in TL2010, for future reference. (TL2010 is not quite yet officially released at time of writing.) Aug 1, 2010 at 14:09
  • @Caramdir: Hmmm, works for me. Not sure what the problem could be... does anything get reported in the console output or log file? (perhaps report back when trying TL2010) Aug 1, 2010 at 14:13
  • No, there doesn't seem to be any relevant output. If I have time, I'll try a pretest of TL2010 sometime in the next days.
    – Caramdir
    Aug 1, 2010 at 14:55
  • 2
    @Will: It only works with \mathscr, not with \mathcal. I do not know if this is by design or a bug. Also the combination of xelatex and unicode-math is horribly broken on my machine, though I'm not really sure why (lualatex works fine. this is from TL2010).
    – Caramdir
    Aug 2, 2010 at 17:46

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.