from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A basin for holding baptismal water in a church.
  • n. A receptacle for holy water; a stoup.
  • n. The oil reservoir in an oil-burning lamp.
  • n. An abundant source; a fount: She was a font of wisdom and good sense.
  • n. Printing A complete set of type of one size and face.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A receptacle in a church for holy water - especially one used in baptism
  • n. A receptacle for oil in a lamp.
  • n. spring, source, fountain
  • n. A set of glyphs of unified design, belonging to one typeface (e.g., Helvetica), style (e.g., italic), and weight (e.g., bold). Usually representing the letters of an alphabet and its supplementary characters.
  • n. A computer file containing the code used to draw and compose the glyphs of one or more typographic fonts on a computer display or printer. A font file.
  • n. A source, wellspring, fount.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A complete assortment of printing type of one size, including a due proportion of all the letters in the alphabet, large and small, points, accents, and whatever else is necessary for printing with that variety of types; a fount.
  • n. A fountain; a spring; a source.
  • n. A basin or stone vessel in which water is contained for baptizing.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A repository for the water used in baptism; now, specifically, a basin, usually of marble or other fine stone, permanently fixed within a church, to contain the water for baptism by sprinkling or immersion: distinctively called a baptismal font.
  • n. A fount; fountain; source.
  • n. A casting; the act or process of casting; founding.
  • n. A complete assortment and just apportionment of all the characters of a particular face and size of printing-type, as required for ordinary printed work.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a specific size and style of type within a type family
  • n. bowl for baptismal water


Middle English, from Old English, from Late Latin fōns, font-, from Latin, fountain.
French fonte, casting, from Old French (from Vulgar Latin *fundita, from Late Latin, feminine of *funditus, past participle of Latin fundere, to pour forth; see fondant) or from Old French fondre, to melt (from Latin fundere).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old English font, from Latin fons ("fountain"). (Wiktionary)
From Middle French fonte, feminine past participle of verb fondre ("to melt"). (Wiktionary)
Apparently from fount, with influence from the senses above (under etymology 1). (Wiktionary)



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • "font" in Hungarian means: weaved

    August 7, 2012

  • Interesting conversational topic, fonts are.

    May 6, 2010

  • Well, dontcry? Have you had a chance to try it? How did it work out?

    October 11, 2008

  • That is sooo cute! I'm totally going to use that the next time I try to pitch a font to a client!

    July 29, 2008

  • "Fonts are the clothes that words wear."

    From this article at

    July 29, 2008

  • Holy smokes! John changed the font while I was away.

    April 2, 2008