Font and Typography Vocabulary Definitions
: The length of an entire alphabet, A to Z, set in one row. The alphabet length of a font varies depending on the weight (i.e., light, medium, bold, black).
Type used for the main body of the page; usually measuring between 8 and 14 points.
Dingbats: a font consisting of symbols and line art images.
Type 16 points or larger in size. Also called headline type.
also known an elliptical periods, indicate the omission of text or an interruption or hesitation. The classic ellipsis is four spaces separated by three periods. The space at the beginning or end provides spacing between the ellipsis character and preceding or following text, including punctuation.
Originally, a space equal to the size of a 12-point capital letter M. Now, the square of the body of any size type (10 points wide for 10 point type). Also a measure of type height on the web.
Half the width of an em space.
the name of a font that is a registered trademark of Linotype-Hell AG; derived from the Latin name for Switzerland.
To adjust the spacing between individual pairs of letters. See also: tracking
Leading (pronounced led’-ing):
The space between rows of type. Also called line spacing. Originally, thin strips of lead were inserted between lines of type to add space and make the type easier to read – hence the term leading.
a font whose characters are all the same width or pitch (the number of characters in an inch. Common pitch values are 10 and 12.) Contrasted to proportionally spaced fonts whose character widths vary depending on the shape of the character.
A measure of type size. One pica equals one-sixth of an inch.
A unit of measure. Twelve points equals one pica. Pica was once the name given to 12-point type, and a 12-point capital letter M was exactly square.
To adjust letter spacing for an entire range of text (such as a headline or paragraph). See also: kerning.