Math upright Latin and Greek styles

Hans Åberg haberg-1 at
Sun May 15 16:47:03 CDT 2016

> On 15 May 2016, at 23:19, Murray Sargent <murrays at> wrote:
> Hans Åberg asked, ”Are there any plans to add math upright Latin and Greek styles, in order to distinguish them from regular (non-math) Latin and Greek? —In programs like TeX, the latter are normally used for italics, so it means that there is a conflict with using them for upright”.
> Math upright Latin is unified with the ASCII alphabetics and math upright Greek is unified with Unicode Greek letters in the U+0390 block. TeX and MathML upright Latin and upright lower-case Greek letters are converted to math italic by default. In the Linear Format, upright letters are enclosed in quotes and marked as “ordinary text”. In Microsoft Word and other Microsoft Office apps, you can control math italicization in math zones using the italics hot key Ctrl+I and other italic formatting tools.
> There is ambiguity as to whether a span of upright ASCII alphabetics is a function name or a product or a combination of the two. Such ambiguities are rare since spans of upright ASCII alphabetics are usually words or abbreviations of some kind such as function names. Individual upright letters can be distinguished as individual variables if desired by inserting appropriate invisible times (U+2062) characters.
> We are thinking about adding other math alphabets as discussed in the post Unicode Math Calligraphic Alphabets. Comments are welcome.

The question arose on the ConTeXt mailing list [1]. Changing Basic Latin and Greek to upright does not seem practical, due to legacy and lack of efficient input methods. So the idea came up to have these reserved for text and computer input, while a specific math upright style would be used when wanting to indicate that.


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