Arabic Typography & Type Design

I assume that the typography is governed by different rules than calligraphy, and that the Arabic writing allows some flexibility and individuality. I observe that some of contemporary typefaces consist of elements of different historical sources, and I find it natural. But I would like to know the answer (or at least your opinions):
How is combining (of calligraphic styles, adapting solutions from one style to a typeface based on another, or [stronger] modification of certain shapes) percieved by native readers or those familiar with Arabic script?

Aratypo, 27.08.2011. For immediate release. We are glad to present Tachkili, a family of 2 fonts, designed by Jadli Zein Alabedeen (Algeria) and programmed by Zakaria Saleh (Palestine).

Tachkil means format and set-up in Arabic, and this family reflects that meaning by its dynamism and clear-cut force!

Please do not hesitate to put a comment if you find an error or you would like to add some other aspects to it.

This family is free for the non-commercial use. If you would like to license it, please contact the designer @: aratypo[@at]


Download link:

Dear all,
we have a new Riqa in dev... It is displayed in fine way within WinWord... However, it has many problems with Adobe InD...

Some ideas/solutions?

Thanking you in advance...


Mennah = Gift of God

We, at Aratypo, are glad to announce the immediate release of “Menna”, a new Arabic Suite composed from 3 fonts (light, normal & bold), designed by Abdoullah Aref (Egypt).

Mennah is designed as children writing, not following formal Arabic calligraphic rules and it is freely distributed for non-commercial use. However, if you want to use Mennah for commercial purposes, please contact the designer:

Please feel free to discuss this font or ask for adding any special feature...

Download link:


First I would apologize if I write something wrong, I'm not English and I'm learning the language.

My question is: What rules exist for Arabic typography logos? I put this example:

I don't understand the Arabic language and I don't know if the logo can be clearly read the meaning. I would like to know the function of the first lines disappear (see the beginning of the animation).

I would appreciate a little analysis of the logo and the following link:

thank you very much

Is Arabic the first cursive writing?

I think Arabic is the first Cursive, because its cursive is modified into formal writing in its writing system.


Is there anyway to fix positioning of diacritics in Nastaleeq. Normally, with changes in the glyph shapes, diacritics mess up. Avoiding their use is not always possible. Any guidance would be a favor.

Hello, my friend designer works on a corporate identity for a large client. They decided to use Georgia as the alternative typeface family for office use. Could you please recommend me a compatible Arabic typeface available as a system font on a Windows platform? Thanks.

This was lurking at the back of a catalogue of Islamic calligraphy that I picked up at Sam Fogg in London a few years ago. I hadn't noticed it until yesterday. The catalogue says it is probably Nigerian, from the early 20th Century: one page from a prayer book of 60 folios with four lines per page, all in this wonderful polychromatic style.

Arabic Graffiti book by Pascal Zoghbi to be published this week.

‘Arabic calligraphy and type design’ article by Kristyan Sarkis published on Typotheque website, showing development of the Thuraya typeface.

vafa018's picture

Arabic Marks

In my font, letters are properly corrected. But when I use Arabic marks such as Kasre or Fathe, then these marks are very baldy positioned or they make letters get disjoint. Why this happens? Is it the glyphs that have problems or I must add some lookup to my font? I have attached a sample to show what I mean.

Salam to all members

This is my first posting but not the first visit to the forum. I have some problems to share with forum members if anyone may solve my problems. I want to write an algorihm for Arabic characters but I did not achieve the goal after trying for round about 10 hours. I will justify my problems with the help of steps (let suppose for some characters).
1. When I press a key for Arabic letter Beh (ب), its isolated form is displayed.
2. In step 2, not pressing any space, when I press another kety, say Kaf (ك), the letter Beh changes to its initial form while letter Kaf automatically changes to its final form.
3. In step 3, the step 2 is repeated untill the space button is not pressed.

arabi's picture

some arabic fonts

hi to all. I look for some arabic fonts.I need the names for these fonts in images, and i need arabic tughra fonts. Does anybody know names for these fonts and where I can buy or download tughra fonts? thanx in advance

You may have noticed this already, but I thought I better post it here anyway. Following the redesign of the mother-page of the BBC News, the BBC Arabic launched their redesigned website. It is probably one of the first, and certainly the biggest site yet to use webfonts – Arabic webfonts that is. It uses a custom version of Nassim by Titus Nemeth. The typeface was painstakingly optimized for screen and for web. Hinted by Thomas Grace and mastered into webfonts by Tim Ahrens.

You can read more on Titus' blog.

We will be releasing Nassim through Rosetta Type Foundry this year, see .

Few pictures:

I would like to face down the initial stroke of letters ain and hah. I know usually it's directed upwards or at least horizontal, but my design needs an exception here. Is it possible? Thanks in advance.

Dear all,

We are pleased to announce "Aratypo", a dedicated group for Arabic Typefaces creation, development and learning activities (only in Arabic).

Aratypo group members work also on the application of Arabic typography in Hard and electronic content: DTP, Web Design, etc.

We worked in the last six months to prepare the first contributions, and we will be glad to receive original contributions, thoughts, or questions from Arabic Typography lovers.

All the best,


i would be very glad if you have a recomendation for an arabic font that will suite to the other hebrew (progtextGOLD by Fontype) and english font (ST. Ryde by Sascha Timplan).
(macintosh offcourse).

WinSoft International has just published Q&A with Robert Bringhurst. You can read it at our web site:

Dear All
I am making a Nastaleeq urdu fully ligature based font and I have dont almost half of ligatues in GSUB lookups and compiled and test are working fine but know I am adding some more ligatures lookups and when I am compiling it it gives message that COMPILATION FAILED and I have check my lookup every thing is look fine and correct tome
what can be the possible reason becuse the volt does not give the full details that why compilation is faild what is the reason?
Best Regards

I am looking for a way to describe in detail an Arabic 3 (٣) but I do not know the proper typography terminology. I have been trying to find a way to describe the difference between the top of the ٢ and ٣ basically the difference between one looking like a U and other a W.

Do you have some resources or refences/cheat sheets that you can point me to?

I'm looking for the early work by Abdellah El Hariri ,Morocco (pictorial works + lettering); and early work by Hakim Ghazali, Morocco.

And Moroccan calligraphy -- mostly from Wazan & Meknes

iaresven's picture

Islamic Calligraphy

I’m doing a research project on Islamic calligraphy in early history, say, pre 1500s. I’m looking for any and all information regarding it!

Hi there.

Another newbie question :)

Do you use FontLab to generate OpenType features of Arabic script? When I try to compile/generate some font with fina, medi and init features, generated output is always deformed or reordered. So I tried to write complex (=unstable) scripts to generate VOLT code from FontLab font, but it's sometimes unreliable.

Any suggestions?

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