Fonts For Viewing Hebrew/Greek Online

When dealing with ancient language resources, one of the big problems is that you try to look at a chunk of text and it just looks like a bunch of squares or odd symbols. Now that Unicode is in common use, we rarely have to deal with character sets and encodings, but fonts can still be a problem, especially fonts that look good and are easy to read. Trying to puzzle out tiny accent marks in Greek or Hebrew Nikud (vowel markings) can literally be a headache.  This short page lists some places to get fonts that work.

Society For Biblical Languages (SBL) Hebrew Font Package

These are the same folks that produce the excellent Biblical Tirot (תֶרֹ) keyboard mappings for typing Biblical Hebrew with full Masoretic vowel-markings and accents. Not surprisingly, they know thing or two about displaying the resulting Hebrew text in a readable manner. Their free font package is usable on Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and even in some Android apps. They also have font packages for Greek, Latin, etc.

Culmus Project Hebrew and Ancient Semitic Scripts (Linux)

The Culmus project produces free fonts and some other tools for working with Semitic Scripts, from Paleo-Hebrew, Pheonecian/Canaanite, etc, all the way to modern Hebrew and specialty fonts. They are focused on fonts for X-Windows (Linux and Unix-like operating systems). If you have such a system, they provide installable packages. I use the David CLM font family myself on a regular basis, including in Evernote where all my class/study notes are stored.

Open Siddur Project (cross-platform) Fonts

The Community Driven Open-Siddur project maintains an exhaustive list of open Hebrew fonts, including many of the fonts in the Culmus package I mention above. It includes instructions for downloading a Zip file and installing either individual fonts or the whole kit-and-kaboodle on Windows (warning: I have not tried this myself). It also has instructions for setting up matching keyboard mappings on Windows.

Cardo Fonts

The Cardo font package is designed for Biblical research and scholarly commentary, including characters for a whole range of classical and scriptural languages, and features for high-quality type-setting. The site contains some instructions for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux users.

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