I would like to typeset a page that looks "antique." Are there packages/fonts in LaTeX that do that? I could find antique fonts online, but they don't include math symbols. An http://www.ctan.org/tex-archive/info/Free_Math_Font_Survey/survey.html (dated 2006) lists various free math fonts that were available then, but none of them look antique.

Examples of what I am looking for:

  1. Einstein's General Relativity Paper
  2. JSTOR; American Mathematical Monthly, in 1960 (requires subscription)
  3. Another one from JSTOR (AMM 1960)
  4. JSTOR; AMM (1894)


  • This is a very similar question to this question here: tex.stackexchange.com/q/9495/2693 It's not clear that many of these antique style fonts have math support, so you may have to improvise with some combination of fonts.
    – Alan Munn
    Jan 29, 2011 at 16:33
  • 1
    There are more things to look at than just the font (and its properties, ie. old-style numerals); in Einstein's paper, for example, pay attention to the inter-word spacing/non-frenchspacing (horizontal rhythm) and baselineskip/et al (vertical rhythm), and typeblock-width and margins!
    – morbusg
    Jan 29, 2011 at 21:38
  • @Alan: Thanks; yes, I noticed that many fonts do not have math support. I guess I'll have to create my own font slowly if needed. @morbusg: Given the amount of data we already have, I think it should be possible to extract the symbols that we commonly use and possibly create a font out of it. Let me try that option when I get time.
    – Vimal
    Jan 30, 2011 at 3:34
  • Wow, look at those summation signs in Einstein's paper. I'd love to use those in a report sometime just to see people's reaction. If you do build up a font please put it on CTAN.
    – Canageek
    Sep 25, 2011 at 3:58
  • Note that you need to do a lot more to create a font than draw the glyphs - even for text, a lot more is needed. For maths, what's needed increases exponentially. You need specially designed fonts for it to work - either TeX-specific or opentype maths. So allow a lot of time!
    – cfr
    Aug 31, 2016 at 2:26

2 Answers 2


If you don't mind using XeLaTeX, you could use the Old Standard font, which is available on CTAN (though not packaged for regular TeX/pdfTeX, unfortunately), along with the mathspec package as so:

\setallmainfonts{Old Standard}

Here's a screenshot taken from the \blindmathpaper command generated by the blindtext package.

old standard font in XeLaTeX

It doesn't have its own math symbols, so some of these are taken from Latin Modern (--the default behavior with mathspec--), but I think they go well enough together.

  • This looks good for the text, but if you look at the math symbols, there still is a difference. :-) I'll try this and see how it looks. Thanks!
    – Vimal
    Jan 30, 2011 at 3:37
  • Since roughly 2016 IIRC also pdfTeX is supported.
    – campa
    Sep 15, 2023 at 19:27

Combining frabjous' answer with some real pain to typeset math look I came up with an answer. So, you can use Old Standard for the text and the Latin math, but GFS Solomos for Greek math and a special contribution of GFS Baskerville for the summation sign. Also, the closest \partial I could find was from TeX Gyre Pagella Math font. Thus,


\usepackage{graphicx} % in order to use rotatebox
\usepackage{physics} % defines \qty{},\pdv{} and more http://www.ctan.org/pkg/physics, very very useful, though not totally necessary

\usepackage{mathspec} % https://ctan.org/pkg/mathspec
    \defaultfontfeatures{Mapping=tex-text, Numbers=OldStyle}
    \setmainfont{Old Standard}
    \setmathsfont(Greek)[Uppercase=Plain,Lowercase=Regular]{GFS Solomos}
    \setmathsfont(Digits)[Numbers=OldStyle]{GFS Baskerville} % because      Solomos' "1" wasn't as good
    \setmathsfont(Latin)[Uppercase=Italic,Lowercase=Italic]{Old Standard}
    % download GFS's fonts from http://www.greekfontsociety.gr/

\newfontfamily{\bask}{GFS Baskerville}
\DeclareMathOperator*{\sum}{\raisebox{-3.5pt}{\scalebox{2}{\rotatebox{1}{{\bask Σ}}}}} % all these lines to define this extreme summation sign

\newfontfamily{\tgp}{TeX Gyre Pagella Math}
\newcommand{\partial}{\text{{\tgp ∂}}} % these three lines go for the weird \partial symbol


G_{im} = 0 \tag{2}

Diese Gleichungen lassen sich einfacher gestalten, wenn man das Bezugsystem so wählt, daß $\sqrt{-g} =1$ ist. Dann verschwindet $S_{im}$ wegen (1 b), so daß man statt erzählt
R_{im} = \sum_{l} \pdv{\Gamma^{l}_{im}}{x^l} &+ \sum_{\rho l} \Gamma^l_{i\rho} \Gamma^\rho_{ml} = 0 \tag{3} \\
\sqrt{-g} &= 1 \tag{3\;a}

Dabei ist
\Gamma^{l}_{im} = - \qty{\begin{array}{cc} im \\ l \end{array}}
gesetzt, welch Grösen wir als »Komponenten« des Gravitationsfeldes bezeichnen.

Ist in dem betrachteten Raume »Materie« vorhanden, so tritt deren Energietensor auf den rechten seite von (2) bzw. auf (3) auf. Wir setzen
G_{im} = -\kappa\qty(T_{im} - \frac{1}{2}g_{im}T), \tag{2 a}


produces this

output of the code

  • Fantastic, thanks. Note to anyone applying this to an already-written document and trying to preserve the alignment of the doc as it had with Computer Modern-- set the Old Standard font size to 12.4 Feb 21, 2018 at 8:23
  • Hey if you're still active on this could you explain how to get this working for a MacTeX user? It seems there are some errors surrounding some fontspec thing. I'm also a total newb but I love this font like the world itself. Feb 23, 2022 at 21:05
  • @AlexanderConrad have you downloaded and installed all the fonts and are the font names the same? Feb 24, 2022 at 6:42
  • @ɪdɪətstrəʊlə Old Standard is renamed to OldStandard. Otherwise where would I find the resources to download these? Feb 24, 2022 at 21:54
  • 1
    @AlexanderConrad For GFS fonts, I write it in the comments of my code. TeX Gyre Pagella should be installed with MacTeX but if not, it's a freely available font so a simple Google should suffice. Feb 25, 2022 at 6:52

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