How can I create accented letters in a font where the glyphs look wrong?

I’m translating to Italian an English manual for a game about 1980’s Poland and it often mentions the Solidarity movement, which is spelled Solidarność in Polish and Solidarity in the manual.

Here in Italy, we never used anything but Solidarność in our books and newspapers. Starting to call it Solidarietà, i.e. translating the word into the used language like the author of the original manual does, would feel very strange.

Hence, the author never had to use the ś and ć glyphs, while I need to.

The font used in the manual, Meridien LT std Medium, has the ś and ć glyphs, but they do not resemble the standard s and c glyphs (they look like they were ported from a different, Sans Serifs font).

How can I go about getting an ś or ć that looks like it’s been written in the right font?

Anything goes, from using a very similar font to using a software to modifying the font, importing the tick from a letter that already has it, as long as it is free. This is a homemade project published under CC-BY-US 3.0 and I won’t die if it has some blemishes, even if I’d rather polish (ha!) it to my best.

If it helps, I’m doing my translation in OOo-Writer. Yes, Open Office. Because I don’t have InDesign here at home and Scribus was too hard to grok with my deadline.


If you do not want to switch to a different font, I see two quick and dirty options:

  • As the font has a single ´ as a character, you can type in your document and insert negative space in between the two, to correctly position the accent. In LibreOffice, You can do this via Format → Character → Position → Spacing → Condensed. For some reason, this is limited to 2.0 pt, but you can circumvent this by inserting zero-width characters, e.g., the zero-width non-joiner. This will almost certainly break such things as searches.

  • Open the font in a free font editor and add the desired characters. For example, in FontForge, all you have to do is select the empty box for ś and choose Element → Build → Build Accented Glyph. You probably want to adjust the accent’s horizontal position after this. (Also do not forget to export and install the resulting font.) Note that this may destroy certain features of the font such as hinting, but then again, this font may not have such in the first place – best compare the results directly to see any such problems.

The font used in the manual, Meridien LT std Medium, has the “ś” and “ć” glyphs

At least for the version I found, this is not the case. The glyphs you see are probably chosen from some fallback font.

Source : Link , Question Author : Zachiel , Answer Author : Wrzlprmft

Leave a Comment