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Feb 11 2013   1:03PM GMT

Is Times New Roman a font or a fount? It depends.

Ivy Wigmore Ivy Wigmore Profile: Ivy Wigmore

Which is correct?

A _____ is a set of printable or displayable text characters in a specific style and size.
a. fount
b. font

Answer: Either, depending on location.

Explanation:

In the US, font is the standard spelling; British style was originally fount, although both spellings are used now. In Canada, we’ve adopted US style for this one, although we still maintain the British u in words like colour, flavour and favour.

Oxford Dictionaries Online provides a handy reference for British and American spelling.

See also: Font of wisdom or fount of wisdom?

Or,  just for fun, go read Steve Martin’s NY Times “Shouts and Murmurs” piece: Times Roman Font Announces Shortage of Periods

Follow me on Twitter @tao_of_grammar

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