Proportional figures for text, fixed-width figures for tables, fractions and symbols and more; they’re all inside.
Like letters, numbers are proportional: they vary in width according to their shapes, from the narrow 1 to the wide 0. These variations help numbers sympathize with the natural rhythms of the alphabet, making their appearance in text less conspicuous. But this practice introduces problems when used for tables, since the width of each number will vary depending on its digits. Enter tabular figures.
For this reason, each of the Mercury Numeric fonts features a full set of tabular figures, built on a fixed width to ensure that columns of data align correctly. (These “Numeric” styles are included in the Pro edition of any grade of Mercury Text, and also in the Mercury Complete package.)
Duplexed Weights and Symbols
Mercury’s tabular figures maintain the same character widths throughout the complete range of weights, styles, and grades, an essential feature for when boldface is used to highlight an entire line (as is common in stock listings and sports statistics.) In each of Mercury’s styles, the fractions, monetary symbols, and mathematical operators are built on matching widths, so that a price expressed in dollars won’t affect the grid when the currency is recalculated in Euros.
Each of the Numeric fonts includes readymade “case fractions” in denominations of halves, thirds, fourths, fifths, sixths, and eighths. Also included is a full set of numerators and denominators, all properly kerned to the fraction bar, for creating custom fractions. OpenType versions of Mercury Text also include superscripts and subscripts, useful for both footnotes and scientific formulae.
Extended Monetary Symbols
In addition to the standard monetary symbols included in all Hoefler & Co. fonts (dollar, Euro, pounds sterling, yen, guilders, and cents) the Mercury Numeric fonts include an additional eight symbols for the Baht, Colon, Naira, Peso, Rupee, Rupiah, Won, and Sheqel.