I am importing a figure with multiple text objects in inkscape (e.g. graph). I sometimes need to change the overall width of the figure to match publishers requirements (e.g. single column figure cannot be over 8 cm wide). Therefore, I select everything and scale the width. This leaves text distorted, but I need to maintain the text aspect ratio. How can I now un-stretch the text afterwards to not look distorted?

The only way I found so far, was to select each text object, press Ctrl+Shift+X to bring up the XML editor, find the scale attribute of the distorted node and remove it. However, this is

  1. cumbersome (have to do it on all text nodes manually) and

  2. moves the text object around.

  • This issue also came up in this inkscape forum post. Your method is still the best way.
    – 7yl4r
    Sep 10, 2019 at 18:27
  • For common cases it's usually quicker to undo the resize, deselect text, redo resize, and reposition text at new locations.
    – mins
    Oct 30, 2021 at 11:26

2 Answers 2


This answer come 4 years after the original question because I found a sneaky workaround that I didn't see posted anywhere else. restore distorted text

You might have to play around with the z-order of the text objects to get the positions right.


Resize [scale] all selected text in place, by a set %

  1. Select text elements
  2. Open Transform window, select Object drop-down > Transform... [Shift + Ctrl + M]
  3. Open the Scale tab
  4. Set a percentage to resize down by
  5. Tick Scale proportionally and Apply to each object separately
  6. Press Apply
  • Not answering the question: it's not resetting the aspect ratio of the text.
    – Eric
    Jan 22, 2019 at 2:12

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