written by: Thursday Bram•edited by: Daniel P. McGoldrick•updated: 5/29/2009
Times New Roman is a font commonly used for setting long text because of its legibility. However, it can be an expensive font to purchase and it's worth considering similar fonts that are free for your desktop publishing projects.
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In the Day Roman typeface, you'll see a more elegant execution of the serifs used in Times New Roman. Times New Roman was developed in the 1930s, specifically for print, while Day Roman actually has a slightly more traditional feel. The font is complete, even to the less common symbols and accented letters, and you can even download a secondary font with the truly obscure symbols you can find in a font. Day Roman will be legible no matter how much text your project contains.
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The appearance of Timeless goes a step beyond Times New Roman. The font has a complete character set, from letters to symbols, most of which seem very similar to Times New Roman. However, subtle differences make Timeless a bit more modern than its traditional counterpart. A bold version of Timeless is also available for download.
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While Dustismo Roman does not so closely match Times New Roman as some other fonts might, it serves the same purpose. Lengthy blocks of text set in Dustismo Roman are easy to read. Given that the font come in italic, bold and even italic bold versions, it can be used in a wide variety of projects equally well. It is a complete typeface, as well.
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Roman Serif moves towards a more modernized appearance, letting Times New Roman show its age in comparison. The font seems very simple and relatively unadorned, at least until you take a close look at details like the uppercase 'R.' Many letters have just a hint of style beyond the standard serif font. In addition to being a complete font, you can download an italic version of Roman Serif.
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More Times New Roman Fonts
While there are few fonts available that are essentially identical to Times New Roman due to copyright laws, there are a wide variety of serif fonts available that can serve similar purposes. If you'd like to look beyond the four fonts listed above, consider checking the serif fonts available through a free font website, such as Dafont. While you won't find Times New Roman, you're likely to find a font that actually fits the feel of your project even better than Times New Roman might.