I can’t find the name of this but see it in many places: basically an all caps with the first letter slightly larger than the rest, as below (circled in orange). enter image description here

2 Answers 2


It's called Small Caps

In typography, small caps (short for "small capitals") are lowercase characters typeset with glyphs that resemble uppercase letters (capitals) but reduced in height and weight, close to the surrounding lowercase letters or text figures.1 This is technically not a case-transformation, but a substitution of glyphs, although the effect is often simulated by case-transformation and scaling. Small caps are used in running text as a form of emphasis that is less dominant than all uppercase text, and as a method of emphasis or distinctiveness for text alongside or instead of italics, or when boldface is inappropriate. For example, the text "Text in small caps" appears as Text in small caps in small caps. Small caps can be used to draw attention to the opening phrase or line of a new section of text, or to provide an additional style in a dictionary entry where many parts must be typographically differentiated.


These are small caps, although it's not so obvious in this font because the small caps are rather high relative to the x-height (height of the lower-case letters). Many book fonts like Bembo have lower small caps, at the x-height or only slightly taller. Image of font Bembo It's possible the font didn't have properly designed small caps glyphs and the program making the document did "fake small caps" by just scaling down the capitals. Real small caps (first line) are designed slightly differently to capitals: they're more squat, wider and with less fine detail. Real small caps (top) and fake small caps (bottom)

  • Yeah I noticed that too. The T and J are much thicker, and so probably the small capitals are just smaller type rather than proper small capitals.
    – Billy Kerr
    Aug 20, 2021 at 11:29
  • Yup. Some small caps are higher though: traditional small caps are at x-height or only slightly higher; some FontShop typefaces have quite tall small caps. Fontwerk's Romaine, based on the work of Robert Granjon, has two sets: one low and historically appropriate (I think they're the best ones to use), one higher in case you prefer that. Mrs. Eaves, which I think introduced this idea, calls the lower small caps "petite caps", but it's not really a text font.
    – Copilot
    Aug 20, 2021 at 12:26
  • Just as a former wielder of the red pencil, if you're working with hard copy, the way to mark it is to put 3 lines underneath the "T" and 2 small lines under the "homas". Then indicate in the margin (or in your PDF comment box) "cap/sc" (minus the quotes). Whoever typesets the copy, or makes corrections, will know what to do. Hopefully. :)
    – JeffK
    Aug 25, 2021 at 20:48

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