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### 8.8. Fonts in formulas

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For most symbols in a formula, the font used for a glyph cannot be changed by a font declaration as it can be in text. Indeed, there is no concept of, for example, an italic plus sign or a small caps less than sign.

One exception involves the letters of the Latin alphabet, whose appearance can be altered by the use of math alphabet identifier commands such as \mathcal. The commands provided by standard LaTeX for this purpose are discussed in Section 7.4; this section introduces a few more. Another exception relates to the use of bold versions of arbitrary symbols to produce distinct symbols with new meanings. This potentially doubles the number of symbols available, as boldness can be a recognizable attribute of a glyph for nearly every shape: depending on the font family, even “<” is noticeably different from “**<**”. Although there is a \mathbf command, the concept of a math alphabet identifier cannot be extended to cover bold symbols; a better solution is discussed in Section 8.8.2.