Newspaper text faces

RadioB's picture

I'm trying to decide on a font to use for the text of a newspaper.

The ones I'm familiar with are:

Eudald news

are their any other great ones that I should check out before I make my decision? serif or sans serif.

I also would like to know what peoples opinions are about Flama, is it a good choice for display type for a newspaper?

Thank You.

Nick Shinn's picture

I've designed several types for news text use.

Sense and Sensibility


If you pick up a copy of The Globe and Mail (Canadian newspaper), you can see Pratt, Sense, and Sensibility used throughout.

RadioB's picture

Thanks Nick

I think Pratt would work very well, definitely one to consider

William Berkson's picture

I think the two foundries that have done the most newspaper fonts recently are Font Bureau and Hoefler & Frere Jones. I would definitely look at their fonts and if anything looks interesting talk to them (via skype?) about your needs, as well as to Nick Shinn and Mario Feliciano. I am also very impressed with Peter Bilak's Greta Text. Adobe's Utopia is another one widely used for newspapers, I believe, and Jean Francois Porchez has done a number of fine newspaper fonts also. Personally, I like Rocky a lot as a headline font. (Le Monde is using it now, I think.)

clauses's picture

Don't forget Unger.

William Berkson's picture

Right Clauses, the fabulous Gerard Unger. I knew I'd leave out some. I'm sure there are many others.

... now that I think of it the wonderful Guardian typefaces and others by Christian Schwartz and Paul Barnes are available at .

quadibloc's picture

Myself, I like Corona and Aurora.

William Berkson's picture

I also missed Kris Sowersby's news faces, including Newzald.

charles ellertson's picture

Arnhem should be on the list

clauses's picture

Was Arnhem ever used for any newspaper?

charles ellertson's picture

Apparently is is being used by a Dutch Financial newspaper. See the comments at

Op45's picture

Adelle by Type Together was designed especially for editorial use:

Very legible at text sizes and personality really comes out in headlines & titles.

.00's picture

I cannot imagine a newspaper ever using ever using such a strong personality type design as Adelle. Legibility be damned, it just doesn't read as a newspaper design.

Op45's picture

I agree that it does have a strong personality, but I think the regular weights set in small sizes have a surprisingly even and neutral appearance suited to the requirements of a newspaper typeface. That said, it does of course depend on the newspaper.

Chris Dean's picture

I have never done newspaper work so I am out of my element. Aesthetics and personal preference aside, would any of you who have had extensive experience in this area consider Starling an appropriate newspaper face? I would be curious to hear your reasoning.

clauses's picture

Lot's of newspapers have at some time used Times New Roman for running text. None of them was printed sheet-fed as The Times was in 1932, so their results were often subpar. Times New Roman is a delicate design you see.

These days newsprint is much better, CTP and all. Starling doesn't offer grades I far as I can see so colour will be a problem.

Chris Dean's picture

@clauses: For myself and the thread, can you define "grades?"

Reed Reibstein's picture

James, to my eye Adelle works pretty nicely in the City Press. It certainly wouldn't work in a more conservative news environment, but, like FF Unit Slab in Metro New York, it adds some useful flavor in a more adventurous publication.

Christopher, H&FJ describe grades beautifully in this description of Chronicle Text. More information here.

There have been a lot of great newspaper faces mentioned already. A few not to miss are Quiosco, Houston, Mencken Text (no longer in use by The Baltimore Sun), Malabar, and Exchange.

Reed Reibstein's picture

And Jad, I've used Flama for a newspaper design in progress, and it's worked out nicely so far. Compared to some of the other straight-sided sans's, it has a characteristic warmth. If you need that hard-edged, almost techy feel, it might not be ideal. But more often than not some friendliness is a good thing in a newspaper setting.

clauses's picture

Grades are fonts cut to different general grades of darkness. This is not a digital invention, some metal-type newspaper faces had it too. Example

J. Tillman's picture

Only slightly off topic... Mencken Text, mentioned with a link in an earlier post, was named after H.L. Mencken. Here's what it says on the site:

"The family’s name Mencken is a tribute to H.L. Mencken’s journalistic contributions to The Sun. According to the London Daily Mail, Mencken ventured beyond the typewriter into the world of typography. Because he felt Americans did not recognize irony when they read it, he proposed the creation of a special typeface to be called ironics, with the text slanting in the opposite direction from italic types, to indicate the author’s humour."

This was a half-century before the proposed sarc mark!

hoefler's picture

Hi Christopher,

There's an introduction to grades here:

with some guidance about selecting grades, here:

From among our library, Mercury Text and Chronicle Text are the two font families we've designed in grades:

I hope this helps!

kentlew's picture

Some of Font Bureau’s graded newspaper text families are demonstrated and discussed in the FB Readability Series PDF (3.1 MB), linked from the Help page about the Readability Series:

But the PDF is sorely out of date, and doesn’t show Miller Daily, Quiosco, or Zócalo.

Gary Lonergan's picture

I inherited Arnhem when I worked for News International's in house newspaper "We're News"
(The budget certainly wasn't used on images). It's very lovely and legible.

I also used Flama when working on BD magazine it's like a cross between
Univers and DIN very neutral and modern

hrant's picture

Adelle has one wonderful advantage, which is especially relevant to newspaper typography: the Italic is a slanted-Roman.


hashiama's picture

hrant, why is a slanted-Roman advantageous to newspaper typography? I thought that's a no-no especially with a serifed face?

hrant's picture

Don't believe the hype.
Among others:

And news is a particularly good place for it because of Objectivity.


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