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Re: On the meaning of ``single-space'' inter-line spacing

From: Michael Piotrowski
Subject: Re: On the meaning of ``single-space'' inter-line spacing
Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2006 12:13:03 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.110006 (No Gnus v0.6) XEmacs/21.4.19 (berkeley-unix)

On 2006-06-28 address@hidden (Ludovic Courtès) wrote:

> People often refer to ``single-space'' or ``double-space'' inter-line
> spacing, but what does it mean exactly?
> Implicitly, it is relative to the font size.  But for instance, in Lout
> terms, 1.0fx (which is single-space, strictly speaking) is clearly too
> tight, while 1.2fx seems more appropriate.
> Is there a widely accepted definition of ``single-space'', or is it just
> imprecise wording?

AFAIK, these terms are typewriter (not typesetting) terminology: On a
mechanical typewriter you could typically select single-spaced,
space-and-a-half, or double-spaced.  Space-and-a-half was normally
used.  Single-spaced is in fact equivalent to 1.0fx, and thus *very*
tight.  Double-spaced, as typically required for manuscripts, "means a
full blank line (not a half-line) between all typed lines" [1] (and is
thus very wide).

Even in traditional typesetting, finer control about vertical space
was possible (in electronic typesetting, anything is possible, of
course).  The term used in typesetting is leading (from lead, the
metal); a leading equivalent to 1.2fx is in fact typical (e.g., 10/12,
the traditional notation, 10 pt type on lines of 12 pt height).


[1]  Chicago Manual of Style, 14th ed., 1993, p. 53

Michael Piotrowski, M.A.                               <address@hidden>
Public key at <http://www.dynalabs.de/mxp/pubkey.txt>

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