Re: "em" should be horizontal, "ex" vertical

Peter Flynn (pflynn@imbolc.ucc.ie)
11 Aug 1997 10:59:50 +0100


Date: 11 Aug 1997 10:59:50 +0100
From: Peter Flynn <pflynn@imbolc.ucc.ie>
To: lee@piclab.com
Cc: www-style@w3.org, www-html@w3.org
Message-id: <199708110959.KAA20382@imbolc.ucc.ie>
Subject: Re: "em" should be horizontal, "ex" vertical

> While that's a good definition, typesetting practice /never/ uses "em"
> as vertical measurement; an em is a horizontal measurement only, and an
> "ex" is the vertical measurement.  This makes measurements based on
> fonts size work with compressed an/or fat fonts.

This is incorrect: pica ems are used for page depth and line spacing
almost universally in the Anglo-American world. When did you last see
a comp's spec specify print-area height in "ex"s?

///Peter