93

This is difficult for me to explain, but how do I put words over a symbol? For instance, I want to add words over an equal sign. Anyone know the command/syntax for that?

Also adding ^ doesn't cut it..., I want the text to appear ON TOP.

  • 2
    What text do you want above the equal sign? – Gonzalo Medina Sep 25 '12 at 23:55
75

You can use a combination of \stackrel and \mathclap (from the mathtools package):

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{mathtools}

\newcommand\myeq{\stackrel{\mathclap{\normalfont\mbox{def}}}{=}}

\begin{document}

\begin{align*}
a &\myeq b \\
  &=c \\
  &= d.
\end{align*}

\end{document}

enter image description here

If using mathtools is not an option, you can use a \makebox of width 0pt:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}

\newcommand\myeq{\mathrel{\stackrel{\makebox[0pt]{\mbox{\normalfont\tiny def}}}{=}}}

\begin{document}

\begin{align*}
a &\myeq b \\
  &=c \\
  &= d.
\end{align*}

\end{document}

enter image description here

Even better, if amsmath has been loaded, is to use \overset instead of \stackrel; a little example using \tiny\sffamily for "def" :

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}

\newcommand\myeq{\mathrel{\overset{\makebox[0pt]{\mbox{\normalfont\tiny\sffamily def}}}{=}}}

\begin{document}

\begin{align*}
a &\myeq b \\
  &=c \\
  &= d.
\end{align*}

\end{document}

enter image description here

Inside the argument for \mbox one can use some of the font modifiers, as I did in my second and third examples.

Particularly, I don't like this kind of notation (it's not really necessary); you should consider if you really need the text above the equal sign.

  • Wouldn't be \mbox better than \text in this case, so that the def is still upshape even e.g. in theorem? – yo' Sep 26 '12 at 6:43
  • @tohecz -- if upshape is always desired, then the expression (as in this case) is probably an operator name, so that approach would be better. – barbara beeton Sep 26 '12 at 12:44
  • @tohecz yes; I updated my answer. Thanks you. – Gonzalo Medina Sep 26 '12 at 14:47
  • I'd prefer \overset to \stackrel; instead of \mbox I'd use \mathrm or \textnormal. – egreg Sep 26 '12 at 15:52
  • @egreg; right; I've added an example with \overset; thank you. I kept the \mbox since I wanted to illustrate changes to the font for the text (which the OP seems to want to apply according to a comment to the other answer). – Gonzalo Medina Sep 26 '12 at 17:23
83
$\stackrel{sometext}{=}$

if sometext is not intended to be in math mode then write \text{sometext} within. (\text is available in amsmath package)

$\stackrel{\text{sometext}}{=}$

blessings

  • Is it possible to change the size and fonts of the text? I tried {\small sometext|, but it didn't work. Also the syntax isn't working very well in \begin{align}...\end{align} environment – Hawk Sep 25 '12 at 23:36
  • 3
    @jak: Please include a minimal working example (MWE) that shows your current usage and highlight clearly what you want or need changed. Do so via an edit to your post. – Werner Sep 25 '12 at 23:55
  • @jak: You can't use \small in mathmode. Have a look at Gonzalo's answer, he successfully uses \tiny there... – Tom Bombadil Sep 26 '12 at 1:19
  • @Hawk now with my edit, by using the command \text inside, you can use any text command you want ;) – loved.by.Jesus Feb 18 '16 at 15:54
33

$\overset{\mathrm{def}}{=}$

\overset is available in amsmath package.

Good luck.

  • 4
    And with the corresponding \underset option, this the simplest answer. – davidparks21 Jan 13 '18 at 0:51

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