Style Names Can Affect Style Definitions

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 24, 2014)

I dislike Word's pseudo-small caps, which are just reductions of full-size caps. So I use a font (Linux Libertine) that has a sister font (L-Libertine C) in which the lowercase letters are replaced by true typographic small caps. It provides a much better look to my documents.

I also control the formatting in Word documents by using styles. I created a style that uses the small caps font I like and I named the style "Style Linux Libertine small caps". In the Format tab of the Font dialog box I did not tick the Small Caps check box because the true small caps are already there in the lowercase range for the font. Even so, after every save and restart, Word ignored that empty check box and created pseudo-small caps out of the L-Libertine C font's uppercase character set; it ignored the actual lowercase typeface entirely.

In investigating this situation, it seems that simply putting the phrase "small caps" in the style name is enough for Word to override the settings in the style definition. When I took the words "small caps" out of the style name, Word had no problem using the typeface as it should have all along.

The moral of the story is that if you are using styles and Word overrides your definitions, you may want to experiment with the name you use for the style definition.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (7601) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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. ...


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