I would like to know how to go about editing and understanding org-latex-title-command. So far it is set to \maketitle but the documentation just has this:

   The command used to insert the title just after \begin{document}. Hide

   This format string may contain these elements:

     %a for AUTHOR keyword
     %t for TITLE keyword
     %s for SUBTITLE keyword
     %k for KEYWORDS line
     %d for DESCRIPTION line
     %c for CREATOR line
     %l for Language keyword
     %L for capitalized language keyword
     %D for DATE keyword

   If you need to use a "%" character, you need to escape it
   like that: "%%".

What would I need to do so that I can at least make my \title font, defined in org keyword #+TITLE:, bigger than its current default settings. For example, this latex wiki has as its first example:

\documentclass{article}% use option titlepage to get the title on a page of its own.
\title{The Triangulation of Titling Data in Non-Linear Gaussian Fashion via $\rho$ Series\thanks{No procrastination}}
\date{2017\\ December}
\author{John Doe\\ Magic Department\thanks{I am no longer a member of this department}, Richard Miles University 
\and Richard Row, \LaTeX\ Academy}

I understand that org-latex-title-command will be inserted right after\begin{document}, but how do I edit this variable with its format string elements? I know that +TITLE: mytitle inserts \title{mytitle} and that \maketitle makes the title appear in the latex document. However, the latex wiki formats the title before it calls \maketitle. Then, how should I accomplish what is in the example by accessing the org-latex-title-command? Ideally, I would just like to make the title bigger without affecting org-latex-title-command. Examples would help.

  • your example from the latex wiki uses the default title font size: it's bigger than body text, but it hasn't been modified from the usual title size. That should be what you see in a pdf generated from an org file without needing any further customization. If the title from your org-mode file is not already in a large font, something strange is happening.
    – Tyler
    Jan 23, 2019 at 17:19
  • Could this be related to pdflatex? I installed MacTex.
    – user20304
    Jan 23, 2019 at 17:26
  • That seems unlikely. Is the title produced in the pdf output from the org-mode source not in a large font by default on your system?
    – Tyler
    Jan 23, 2019 at 17:57
  • The goal of adjusting the title font size would likely more easily be addressed by using the titling package. Example: #+LaTeX_HEADER: \usepackage{titling} \pretitle{\begin{flushleft}\LARGE\sffamily}
    – dat
    Feb 5, 2021 at 19:44

1 Answer 1


The LaTeX command \maketitle simply formats the various title page elements (author, title, etc.) according to the current document style. When you wrote “However, the latex wiki formats the title before it calls \maketitle,” you are misunderstanding the LaTeX code. The \title command simply stores the text of the title; the \author command stores the author string; and so on. They are not rendered until \maketitle is invoked.

It's generally considered bad form to override the document style's formatting, but if you want to do it anyhow and make your own custom title page, you can use any sequence of LaTeX commands instead of \maketitle. In org-mode, that would look something like this:

#+TITLE: Monty Python \\
#+TITLE: and the \\
#+TITLE: Holy Grail
#+AUTHOR: Knott A. M\o\o se
#+DATE: 932 A.D.
#+begin_src emacs-lisp :exports results :results none :eval export
  (make-variable-buffer-local 'org-latex-title-command)
  (setq org-latex-title-command (concat
     "{\\LARGE %t \\par }\n"
     "\\vspace 2cm\n"
     "{\\normalsize %a \\par}\n"
     "\\vspace 3cm\n"
     "{\\huge %D \\par}\n"

When you export the Org document to LaTeX, you'll get a document with the following sequence inserted where \maketitle would have been:

{\LARGE Monty Python \\
and the \\
Holy Grail \par }
\vspace 2cm
{\normalsize Knott A. M\o\o se \par}
\vspace 3cm
{\huge (932 A.D.) \par}
  • I accepted your question because it does produce similar output. However, which org version do you use? On the date section I get this line {\huge ((latex-fragment (:value \today :begin 1 :end 7 :post-blank 0 :parent #0))) \par} and the pdf does not render as expected. My org-version: 9.1.9
    – user20304
    Jan 23, 2019 at 17:16
  • Huh, fascinating! My org-version is 9.0.9. I don't see anything on the Org mode release notes page that is obviously related. Hmm... were you exporting to Texinfo perhaps? --- In any case, I hope my answer gave you some additional context to learn from. Jan 23, 2019 at 17:50
  • Your answer is very helpful. Since this is not a priority I will take a look later. I rather not override the org global variable.
    – user20304
    Jan 23, 2019 at 17:57
  • Okay, cool. Glad to help! By the way, the weird way I showed you (above) to set the variable--- in a source block--- is a way to set the variable just for the current file, not globally. (The make-variable-buffer-local accomplishes that. It could also be done with file-local variables.) So that might ease your mind a bit. Cheers! Jan 23, 2019 at 21:30

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