Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Using Very Large Font Sizes.

Using Very Large Font Sizes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 19, 2017)


When you are formatting text in your document, one of the things that you can specify is the font size of that text. Each character in your document can be a different font size, if you desire. You specify the size of font to use in points, a typographical measure that is roughly equivalent to 1/72 of an inch. Word supports font sizes from 1 point to 1638 points, which means you can use fonts that are 1/72 of an inch all the way up to 22-3/4 inches.

Don't these sizes deceive you, however. You might expect that if you set a font size to 144 points, you will end up with letters two inches high. You won't. What you really end up with actually depends on the font you selected. Font sizes are measured from the top of the ascenders on a letter (ascenders are the portions of a letter that point upwards) to the bottom of the descenders on a letter (descenders are the portions that point downwards).

This means that except in a few specialty fonts, no single character in the standard English alphabet will have the full height of the font, because no letter uses both ascenders and descenders. One way to see the full height of the font in one character is to use the Middle English thorn, a bizarre little character that looks like a combination lowercase b and p. You create the character by holding down the Alt key and pressing 0254 on the numeric keypad. Since the character has both a descender and an ascender, you can see the real size of the font.

The bottom line is that if you want to use very large font sizes and you want to make sure that your letters are a specific size, you will need to play around to figure out which font size is best for you. Pick a letter (perhaps a capital letter X) to be your "reference" letter, and then print some in various sizes. When you find the one that appears to be the size you want, you will then know what point size to make the rest of your characters.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1863) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Using Very Large Font Sizes.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


Floating Footer

Need some specific text to appear just below the end of the text on the last page of your document? You can accomplish ...

Discover More

Formatting Endnote Reference Marks

The reference marks used for endnotes are, by default, formatted "good enough" for most people. If you are one of those ...

Discover More

Returning a Worksheet Name

Need to know the name of the current worksheet? You can use the CELL function as the basis for finding this information ...

Discover More

The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

More WordTips (menu)

Automatically Using Smart Quotes

As a way to make your documents look more professional, Word can utilize "smart quotes" for both quote marks and ...

Discover More

Applying Formatting to Words

You don't have to select whole words before applying direct character formatting. With the proper Word options set, ...

Discover More

Smushing Text Together

Word gives you control over how your text appears on the page. This includes adjusting how close letters are to each ...

Discover More

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.


If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is five minus 4?

2016-07-04 17:23:08



2016-06-08 14:07:01


I can't print font larger than 71 font size. Is there a way to fix this?

I can view font larger than 71 but when I print it, it is blank on the paper.


2016-06-07 10:10:24


I make large font to make template's to copy to wood to make signs. (lot of to's)

I use Calimi font, (?). ArtWord and have made 2, 4, 6, & 8 inch. But forget the steps I go through to get there. And when I do the different numbers are not all the same height, even though I have the same size entered in the size.

At the moment, I've been working on trying to make an 8" template. I can produce it, but only half the number appears on the page.

Eventually, I intend on making whole alphabets in various Fonts. But not until I can master sizing these correctly.

Have some simple steps? How about getting the outline of the letter vs the solid when you first click on/ enter Word Art. You see the outline of the letters, yet when you click on it the product is
solid. Lot of ink wasted to print.

Best Regards,
Tom Kircher

2016-04-07 22:40:02

Carole Psrinz

I can get my font bigger for making signs but my printer will not print it large. I looks good on preview but prints just a little larger than normal size. we have windows 10

2015-11-16 15:41:03

Fred Vanderhorst

The largest font in most word processors is 96pt

Do you have ready made ones that go higher without having to follow a lot
of complicated instructions??

2015-09-12 06:13:37


What is the highest font you can get up to like 293374 for example. Plus 5+4=9.

2015-07-17 16:36:37


In Word just type over the 72 with the point size you require.

2014-09-27 12:17:53


I'm wanting to print letters 3 inches high but my font size on microsoft only goes up to 72 (1.5 in?) How can i print off bigger letters? thanks!

2014-09-25 20:29:23


I want to do the same - - - how can I find a way to print 8 inch letters?

2013-02-11 21:23:41

jeff haines

This did not show how to get capital letters 8 inches tall. How do you do this? I'm making templates on heavy paper in order to make signs for a church youth car wash.
Thank you for any help you can supply.

This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.


FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.