by Paul D. Hunt
One benefit of web fonts that many designers may not immediately think of is the potential to serve fonts for languages that website visitors may not have font support for on their local devices. In case you may have missed this information in earlier communications, the web fonts we are serving on Typekit are full analogues of desktop fonts. This means that the web versions of all our fonts have all the same glyphs and all of the OpenType features found in their counterparts. Although there is currently no mechanism for exploring language support on Typekit, I have been assured that this will be forthcoming. In the meantime, I thought it would be worthwhile to review the language support provided by our current set of web fonts.
Firstly, all of our fonts marked with the suffix “Std” contain the most basic Latin character set, which is defined by our Adobe Latin 2 character set (AL2). Fonts designated as “Pro” will support the major European languages which utilize the Latin script and will support our Adobe Latin 3 character set (AL3), but might contain additional characters. For example, Myriad Pro supports Vietnamese, monotonic Greek, and basic Cyrillic in addition to the AL3 characters. Beyond this level of support, Minion Pro, and Garamond Premier Pro also support polytonic Greek. Hypatia Sans Pro and Adobe Text Pro offer our widest linguistic coverage. These two families support our Adobe Latin 4 character set (AL4), which covers all European languages that are written with Latin script, several Romanization transliteration schemes, polytonic Greek, and extended Cyrillic for several minority languages. A listing of languages that are supported by each of our character sets, as well as a table showing which character sets each font family covers is attached at the end of this posting.
To take advantage of these additional language capabilities on Typekit, make sure your kit’s “Subset” option is set to “All Characters.” As you can imagine, not subsetting the fonts has the potential of greatly increasing the size of your type assets and the Typekit machinery will warn you of this. If you are sure that you don’t mind this increase in size, simply ignore this warning. Otherwise, implement your kit as usual.
Language support of Adobe character sets
Adobe Latin 2 (AL2): Afrikaans, Basque, Breton, Catalan (without the l-dot, added in AL3), Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, Gaelic, German, Icelandic, Indonesian, Irish, Italian, Javanese (Latin), Malay (Latin), Norwegian, Portuguese, Sami (excepting Northern and Skolt), Spanish, Swahili, Swedish, and Walloon.
Adobe Latin 3 (AL3): All the languages supported by AL2 plus Croatian (Latin), Czech, Estonian, Gagauz (Latin), Hungarian, Kashubian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Moldovan (Latin), Polish, Romanian (Latin), Serbian (Latin), Silesian, Sorbian, Slovak, Slovenian and Turkish.
Adobe Latin 4 (AL4): All the languages supported by AL3 plus Afar, Azerbaijani (Latin), Belarusian (Latin), Chamorro, Chichewa, Esperanto, Filipino/Tagalog, Gikuyu, Greenlandic, Guarani, Hawaiian, Igo/Igbo, Kuskokwim, Luba (Ciluba), Maltese, Maori, Marquesan, Ndebele, Oromo, Samoan, Setswana, Sidamo, Somali, Sotho (Northern and Southern), Swazi, Tahitian, Tetum, Tongan, Tsonga, Tuareg, Uzbek (Latin), Vietnamese, Wallisian, Welsh, Xhosa, Yoruba, and Zulu. For Romanization it supports several schemes for Indic and Arabic, as well as Cyrillic and Pinyin Chinese.
Adobe Cyrillic 1 (AC1): Balkar, Belarusian (Cyrillic), Bulgarian, Erzya, Karachay, Kumyk, Macedonian, Moksha, Nanai, Nogai, Russian, Rusyn, Serbian (Cyrillic) and Ukrainian.
Adobe Cyrillic 2 (AC2): All the languages supported by AC1 plus Abaza, Adyghe, Agul, Avar, Bashkir, Buryat, Chechen, Chuvash, Crimean Tatar (Cyrillic), Dargin, Dungan, Ingush, Kabardian, Kalmyk, Karakalpak, Kazakh, Khinalugh, Komi, Kyrgyz (Cyrillic), Lak, Lezgian, Moldovan (Cyrillic), Mongolian (Cyrillic), Ossetian, Rutul, Tabasaran, Tajik, Tat, Tatar, Turkmen, Tuvan, Uyghur (Cyrillic) and Uzbek (Cyrillic).
|Adobe Garamond Pro||AL3|
|Adobe Text Pro||AL4||polytonic||AC2|
|Bickham Script Pro||AL3|
|Caflisch Script Pro||AL3|
|Cooper Black Std||AL2|
|Garamond Premier Pro||AL3 + Vietnamese||polytonic||AC1|
|Hypatia Sans Pro||AL4||polytonic||AC2|
|Minion Pro||AL3 + Vietnamese||polytonic||AC1|
|Myriad Pro||AL3 + Vietnamese||monotonic||AC1|
|News Gothic Std||AL2|
|Voluta Script Pro||AL3|
[This is the fifth installment of "Web Font Wednesdays," our continuing series of posts regarding fonts on the web.]