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Copy Cyrillic letters from MS Word to Latex

LaTeX Forum: Fonts & Character Sets

Add tags Information and discussion about fonts and character sets (e.g. how to use language specific characters)

Postby rockdazzie on Mon Nov 15th, 2010

Dear Latex-helpers,
I am writing a thesis in english with Latex using MikTex and TeXnicCenter.
I want to include an abstract in russian with cyrillic letters. A friend translated my english abstract using MS Word. The problem now is how to copy the cyrillic letters from the Word-Document into my Latex file and how to print it out.
I copied and pasted the cyrillic letters to TeXnicCenter. This worked without problem. Than I typed into my header:

However, this did not work. The cyrillic text part in the pdf consists only of ?????????????????????

Please help me!

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Postby localghost on Mon Nov 15th, 2010

TeXnicCenter (TXC) 1 RC1 stable doesn't not support Unicode. Either try TXC2 alpha 3 (Build 1118) or another editor introduced in the »Editors« section of the forum.

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Postby woj-k on Mon Nov 22nd, 2010


this isn't exactly what you were looking for, but if it's a short text (like, say, an abstract), I find it useful to switch to the OT2 or T2A encoding. In the former, you can write Russian using Latin transliteration, which is manageable in a short text. For reasons unknown to me, this produces low-quality output in a .pdf (if you magnify the letters, they're quite grainy and jagged). A less convenient (but typographically much more pleasing) solution is to use T2A, in which each character is a control sequence like \cyra, \cyrv, \CYRZH, \cyrsftsn... This will produce smooth fonts in a .pdf. Here is code with both variants for comparison:

Code: Select all  •  Open in online LaTeX editor
}%the last invoked encoding will be the default

\newcommand{\russianottwo}[1]{{\fontencoding{OT2}\selectfont #1}}

\newcommand{\russianttwoa}[1]{{\fontencoding{T2A}\selectfont #1}}

English text.

Russian OT2: \russianottwo{Ivan. Zhenshchina.}

Russian T2A: \russianttwoa{\CYRI\cyrv\cyra\cyrn. \CYRZH\cyre\cyrn\cyrshch\cyri\cyrn\cyra.}

English text.

In this link, under the "OT2 (latin) transliteration" heading, you will find links to files that will give you all the control sequences you need:

The other methods described there are also noteworthy,

Neither T2A or OT2 is as convenient as copy-pasting Cyrillic from a text editor, but it has the advantage of letting you stay within the ASCII character set, thus bypassing your problem with software that can't handle international chars.

Hope that helps!
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