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Tengwar Formal CSUR

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Tengwar Formal CSUR is a modification of the font Tengwar Formal by Michal Nowakowski. The difference is that Tengwar Formal CSUR does not map the tengwar over existing Roman characters in the fashion of Dan Smith’s encoding. Instead, it uses the Free Tengwar Font Project’s character mapping in the Private Use Area of Unicode, as outlined in Michael Everson’s ConScript Unicode Registry (CSUR). Like this, Tengwar Formal CSUR does not violate the Unicode standard. Tengwar Formal CSUR makes use of smart font rendering techniques for selecting the appropriate tehtar etc.

Download and Installation

For using the font on your computer, download the latest release by clicking on TengwarFormalCSUR11.zip/download (alternatively, go to the Free Tengwar Font Project files and manually select a TengwarFormalCSUR[version].zip file). Open/unzip the file. Install the font file according to your system:

To use this font’s tengwar, you need a way of accessing the Personal Use Area characters where they are mapped. There are several ways to do this:

Font rendering

A tengwar font requires a complex rendering mostly due to many possible tehtar combinations. In a Dan Smith’s mapping tengwar fonts, this requirement is met by including up to four different versions of most tehtar and of some other signs. This font’s tengwar mapping, however, provides only one character for each tengwar sign. Depending on the surrounding characters, the tehta will take its appropriate shape. This is achieved by the use of smart font technologies.

Tengwar Formal CSUR requires support for smart font technologies. The problem is that each technology has its shortcomings:

This font’s smart rendering is provided in Graphite as well as in Apple Advanced Typography. Like this, they will work in more applications. Applications that understand Apple Advanced Typography, but not Graphite will pick the AAT information and vice versa. There are still lots of applications that will not understand either one. Just to provide some examples:

Smart rendering support Partial smart rendering support No smart rendering support
Windows Vista
  • OpenOffice 3.2
  • XeTeX
  • SIL WorldPad
  • Firefox
  • GIMP
  • Internet Explorer
  • Microsoft Office
  • Opera
  • Safari
Ubuntu Linux
  • OpenOffice 3.2
  • XeTeX
  • Abiword
  • Firefox
  • Gedit
  • GIMP
  • Inkscape
  • Opera
Mac OS X
  • Firefox
  • TextEdit
  • XeTeX
  • GIMP
  • Inkscape
  • OpenOffice
  • Mail
  • Opera
  • Safari
  • TextWrangler
  • Terminal


  1. Partial ligature support on Ubuntu Linux and Mac OS X means that all ligatures work except for the Zero Width Joiner ligatures.

    On Windows, the picture is more complicated and there are various degrees of partial ligature support.

  2. Windows XP generally does not support ligatures, though partial ligature support may be found in specialized desktop publishing applications such as Adobe InDesign. Windows 7 has not been tested, though I’d expect it to be at least as good as Windows Vista.

Tengwar Formal CSUR Smart Rendering Options

The following list explains the different smart rendering options of Tengwar Formal CSUR. These options may be accessed either with Graphite or with Apple Advanced Typography. Note that for accessing them with Graphite, applications such as OpenOffice.org or XeTeX require the Graphite number of the option, rather than its name.

Descending W-tengwa
This option concerns the character Bombadil W (the one that reminds of a turned lambe).
  • Default: The Bombadil W does not descend under the baseline.
  • Descending W-tengwa (Graphite number 204=1): The Bombadil W descends under the baseline.
Marked Osse
This option lets you choose between a regular osse and an osse that is marked with a small hook.
  • Default: No marked osse.
  • Word final (Graphite number 207=1): Marked osse at the ends of words.
  • Always (Graphite number 207=2): Every osse is marked.
Bar style
The bar above and the bar below tehtar can be either straight or similar to a tilde.
  • Default: Straight bars.
  • Tilde (Graphite number 209=1): Tilde-shaped bars.
A-tehta style
The A-tehta and the reversed A-tehta (Æ-tehta), usually three dots, may look like a circumflex.
  • Default: Three Dots.
  • Circumflex (Graphite number 210=1): The tehtar look like a circumflex.
Sa-rince style
There are many forms of the spacing sa-rince that is used at the ends of words.
  • Default: The sa-rince will look like a small hook.
  • Swash (Graphite number 211=1): The sa-rince has a more prominent, swash-like form.

How to Use Tengwar Formal CSUR Smart Rendering Options

Tengwar Formal CSUR has a number of built-in smart rendering options. They can only be used on applications that provide a method of accessing them. Applications that provide such a method include XeTeX, OpenOffice.org (except on Mac OS X), SIL WorldPad (Windows only), or TextEdit.app (Mac OS X only). The exact procedure of accessing the smart rendering options will depend on the application. Some examples:

If you want to use a smart rendering option, you append the numeric Graphite code of that option after the font name, for instance Tengwar Formal CSUR:212=1. There is also an OOo extension available, that lets you choose the wanted features from a list.
TextEdit.app provides a graphical user interface for selecting any smart rendering option. Open the Show Fonts floating window (from the Format menu under the Font entry or by simply hitting Command+T). Click on the gearwheel in the bottom left corner and select Typography.... From the Typography floating window, you can choose any smart rendering option.
SIL WorldPad
SIL WorldPad also provides a graphical user interface for selecting any smart rendering option.
In XeTeX, you have to include \usepackage{fontspec}. Then, you can for instance define a font command such as \font\usetildenotbars="Tengwar Formal CSUR/GR:209=1".