I came across this recently where, IIUC, the lowercase was superscript while the uppercase was normal or subscript.

What is this style called?

What is this style called

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1 Answer 1


Regardless of how it is achieved, it is called a "drop cap" or "dropped capital."

Your example without any other context suggests it is a sloppy hack to emulate the effect without having proper control of e.g. baseline offset caused by: ignorance; aesthetic choice; lack of software support; all of the above.

Normally, there would be one drop cap at the start of a paragraph only and usually only one per chapter or section. The fact that there are several in-line suggest an aesthetic choice.

  • You'll be relieved to know that I copied and pasted some text superscript and pasted it into a document and the text was typing out in what you see above. That design is not out there in the wild. Commented Oct 11, 2019 at 23:12
  • +1 for pointing out it should be sparsely used. I find that sentence super-hard to read.
    – Criggie
    Commented Oct 12, 2019 at 19:58
  • 1
    please don't take what I wrote as a complaint. I don't really like it per se, but context is everything. I mean, I grew up looking at xeroxed fanzine from the early 70s and believe me, the ones you see online are the good ones people choose to photograph. Evn so, there was a lot of talent and intelligence and it is not so easy to write off some choices as lack of training. And I love sloppy hacks.
    – Yorik
    Commented Oct 15, 2019 at 14:30

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