# Articles or sources on letter widths

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Posts: 61
Hello,

Looking for articles on construction of letter widths.

Example E, F, L share the same width.

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• Posts: 61
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Ignore above image, unsure how to delete. Image below is the example, I'm referring.

• Posts: 2,804
edited February 2017
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When you say "letter widths" do you mean the marking width (the black part of the letter) or the advance width (the total space allocated the letter, including any white space)?

As a for-example, let's say that the marking width of the E, F, L were identical (typically not, as the lowest bar of the E is usually widest so the F is narrower, but just for the sake of argument, pretend they were all three the same). The F would still usually have less advance width because it would be allocated less right sidebearing. The L would have even less right sidebearing and be narrowest in advance width. Even if all three had the same black body width.
• Posts: 210
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I see no benefit from imposing any constraints on the letter's contour width or the advance width. Only figures 0-9 and maths symbols like + = × ÷ have good reasons to be constrained to a single advance width.
• Posts: 365
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You might be referring to proportions rather than widths, i.e. what relation the widths of different letters have, in relation to each other, and in relation to their height.

Based on the image you pasted I suggest you look into resources relating to roman inscriptional lettering, or capitalis monumentalis. You'll find many resources as to how the square base form of capital letters relates to classical proportions. Later neoclassical thinkers have, of course, revived this idea, for example Dürer or the Romain du roi, which are highly geometric in their underlying structure and construction.

If you are looking for printed matter to study, I can recommend The Eternal Letter, which contains a lot of different essays and writing that all centres around roman inscriptional lettering and its present descendants and implications - although it is naturally not a treatment of proportions, exclusively.