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Arboreal for Mac and ArborWin (Arboreal for Windows)

Sample tree    Download from ($30.00, no shipping charge) logo

Arboreal is the popular tree-building font from Cascadilla Press. With Arboreal you'll find it easy to create professional-looking syntax trees like the one above right in your word processor. You don't have to struggle with a separate graphics program, you don't have to make do with slashes and backslashes, and you don't have to draw all your lines by hand. Arboreal is a font which works with any application to provide you with the pieces you need to create your trees quickly and easily.

Put the text of the tree in any font you like, and use Arboreal to do the rest. You can create lines connecting a node to one, two, or three daughters. You can make triangles. All in various widths, of course. You can even make lines showing movement. Put arrows at the end if you want. All of these options are simple keystrokes in Arboreal.

You can order Arboreal as a download from When you order from, you can start using Arboreal today. You'll receive a personal download link as soon as has processed your payment.

Arboreal for Mac and ArborWin include the TrueType font, clear instructions, and a key map on a handy reference card. The fonts work with all current operating systems and applications.

Our standard single-user license agreement does not allow Arboreal or ArborWin to be installed in shared-computer environments such as computer labs. For that sort of environment, we offer a 1-year renewable license for $20 per computer. Contact for details or to place an order.

Installation tips

All computers: If a font does not appear immediately after installation, try closing all applications and rebooting the computer.

Windows: In some circumstances, the Attachment Manager may block you from expanding a zip file. Go to Properties for the zip file and select Unblock.

Windows: If you cannot move the font from the original folder to your system's Fonts folder, try moving the font file out of the original folder to somewhere other than the Fonts folder, and then from there into the Fonts folder.

How to use Arboreal

This section is excerpted from the instructions which accompany Arboreal.

The easiest way to create a tree is to type in the text for the nodes in approximately the positions you want. Then go back to a spot where you want connecting lines, select Arboreal from the font menu, and press the appropriate key. Finally, use spaces or tabs to move everything into place.

For example, say you want to create a simple three node tree with VP dominating NP and V. Type VP, hit return twice, and then type NP V with some spaces in the middle:
example 1
Then go back to the blank line between VP and NP, select Arboreal from the font menu, and press 2:
example 2
Finally, space everything into place:
example 3
For simple trees you can use spaces to move text and Arboreal lines into place. Using center tabs instead of spaces will provide more accurate alignment in your trees. For constructing a large tree, you may want to select the entire tree and set center tabs at every 1/4 inch.

With most trees you create, you probably will want more than one set of connecting lines. Rather than repeatedly switching fonts, you can simply copy a character that is already in Arboreal and paste it into all the appropriate locations. You can then change the particular Arboreal character as necessary, but you will not need to change fonts. You can also copy an entire tree that you have already created, and then modify that tree.

You should set exact line spacing for your entire tree to the same point size you are using for the Arboreal pieces, or slightly larger. See the section on line spacing for more information.

The detailed instructions that come with the font include numerous examples and tips.

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