Thursday, January 19, 2006

A nice-looking, free Greek font...?

I've received this enquiry from Casey Perkins. Can anyone help?

'I have obtained from Maurice Robinson the latest text files with the accented 2005 Byzantine Text. I plan to put up a web viewable/searchable version of the Byzantine text (including the parsings provided by Dr. Robinson). I initially planned to use Mounce's Teknia Greek font, but the more I look at it, I see that it's not going to be good enough. Do you have any recommendations for a nice-looking, free Greek font to use with this project?'

My shopping list would be: nice-looking and free and Unicode...

23 comments:

  1. SIL's Gentium happens to be my favorite, and it meets all of the qualifications: free, looks good, and is Unicode.

    Rick Brannan
    ricoblog

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  2. I second Gentium. Look's great and it's free.

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  3. I love the font (it's the best I've seen), but I need for the user to be able to type Greek text in as well, and this font makes it too difficult, unfortunately. The user should be able to install the font and go.

    Casey

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  4. Rodney Decker has a unicode Greek font that he created available on his site. It's the one I use for viewing TLG online. But I don't know how well it compares to other options. It's worth considering in the mix at least before you decide.

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  5. I was gonna suggest Gentium but it looks like two others have beat me to it. Put it down as 3 votes for Gentium.

    FWIW- Libronix will also be using the Gentium font in more upcoming books because of its versatility.

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  6. There is a list of free Greek Unicode fonts available on Internet at http://www.laparola.net/greco/font.php Since they are all Unicode, they all have the same problems in being able to type the Greek words.

    By the way, I too am working on Robinsons' Byzantine text, and in the next couple of days it will be at http://www.laparola.net/greco/ with the same searches possible as for the other Greek texts.

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  7. Look also at the Tyndale House website for a Unicode pack including keyboard lay-outs and a font (Cardo) that has all the characters used in Biblical Studies, including even a και-compendium. It isn't perhaps the prettiest font but at least it is complete for most purposes.

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  8. maurice a robinson1:46 pm, January 20, 2006

    In case anyone is interested, the same font used in the R-P Byz 2005 edition is now freely available for download somewhere on the internet. The font is Allotype's "Kadmos,". The reason it is now freely available is because Allotype has gone out of business, and released its fonts for non-commercial purposes.

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  9. "By the way, I too am working on Robinsons' Byzantine text, and in the next couple of days it will be at http://www.laparola.net/greco/ with the same searches possible as for the other Greek texts."

    Hi Richard,
    Perhaps I'll wait and see if your project does everything or at least most of what I was planning before I proceed. I look forward to seeing it.

    Casey

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  10. Richard,
    I've looked at your site and it's very impressive. It's similar in some ways to what I was planning to do, but there are enough differences for me to go ahead and proceed. I'll certainly be using your site some, now that I know it exists. Thanks for your work.

    Casey

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  11. "In case anyone is interested, the same font used in the R-P Byz 2005 edition is now freely available for download somewhere on the internet."

    I thought about asking about the font used in the book, since it is a very nice one. But it is a Unicode font (or so it appears to me from the info I found on it), which makes it unusable for typing purposes. But maybe I'll use one font for display and another for querying.

    Casey

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  12. If you're worried about it being too hard for users to enter text with a unicode font, you could (this is the computer scientist in me speaking) probably write some relatively short Javascript to convert standard characters to a relevant unicode characer entity. If I had more time I would try it myself, but...

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  13. I went to SIL's Gentium site and only found Latin Gentium available for downloading. No Greek. Where'd I miss it?

    Tom

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  14. I've tried a number of free non-Unicode Greek fonts today, and they all look ugly on web pages. I'm going to go with Gentium for display, and some other non-Unicode font for typing in query criteria.

    Thanks for the recommendations, everyone.

    Casey

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  15. Casey,

    Where do you download SIL's Gentium Greek font?

    Tom

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  16. Tom,
    It's not a Greek font specifically, it's a general purpose Unicode font that includes a full set of Greek letters and characters, among other things. Not too useful for normal typing, but it should work nicely on a web page.

    If you have Word, try looking under Insert --> Symbol for the Greek characters.

    Casey

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  17. See a sample online keyboard here.
    here

    Check the dropdown menu for Greek.This is unicode but unfortunately not polytonic. It would be nice to see an online polytonic unicode Greek keyboard some time.

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  18. Although if you are using Unicode, there is no need to choose only one font. Just list all of the Greek capable Unicode fonts in your font tag or style sheet, and whichever one your user has will be used. That way as well your site will always work on newer versions of Windows, without forcing the user to download a font before he or she can use the site (which would lose you some visitors).

    By the way, the searchable Greek Byzantine text is now available at http://www.laparola.net/greco/.

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  19. Entering Unicode is not difficult (I see that several have implied as much). On Windows, use Keyman and you can type Unicode Greek text directly. There are full directions on my Unicode page:
    http://faculty.bbc.edu/rdecker/unicode.htm
    There's lots of info here re. using Unicode in biblical studies, including a substantial paper ont he subject and many of the key links.

    And yes, I also have a free Unicode Greek font available (that was mentioned here also). You can find it at:
    http://faculty.bbc.edu/rdecker/galileeunicode.htm

    It is not a text font, but a sans serif font optimized for web page display.

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  20. Perhaps you might find some interesting greek fonts at this site
    Ευτυχείτε.

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  21. Also, the Greek Font Society has some beautiful unicode fonts:

    http://www.greekfontsociety.gr/pages/en_typefaces1.html

    Most of these are greek-only. But a couple are both greek and latin characters.

    I realize this posting is years too late. But, I just found this blog a little while ago.

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