Arabesque Initialen - Free Display Font by Dieter Steffman

TrueType & Postscript Type 1 font formats, version 1.0 (inital release) elaborate decorative "first letter" display font.

This is a free font (never to be sold) released for public use by Dieter Steffmann. This font is OK for commercial use, even as a web font. No derivatives are allowed.

The authoring artist, Dieter Steffmann, has very little restrictions on the use of his free fonts (so, personal/commercial/charity work is OK, and you may use it as a #webfont, too), EXCEPT that he maintains his full Copyright worldwide, and therefore this font should not be modified or otherwise used to create a derivative font, and that this font should never be sold. The font or fonts in this archive is/are offered 'as is' without any warranty. This has been a quick synopsis on authorized use, more info is given under the DETAILS section, below.

"Arabeque Initialen" is an unusual, highly decorative, elabotately illustrated, 'first letter' style serif display font that is offered only in capitals, although the lowercase key register mirrors the uppercase capital characters. There are no numerals, punctuation nor symbols included in this character set. The font offers 54 characters. One character (@) is an illustration of an arabian woman with roses in her hair. Another is Dieter's company logo. This font does not have support for European Latin accented letters, either. I have noticed that the I and J are identical.

This font is intended to be used as a large 'first letter' in manuscripts and book chapters, where the first letter accentuates, decorates and celebrates the start of a new chapter, or is used to highlight some other informational illustrated context or section. When used in the intended function, if the first letter is not large enough, the illustrated 'first letter' will lose the beauty and fuction that is intended, therefore this illustrated first letter would be quite enlarged compared to the srounding text.

Please note that this is not a fixed width or monospaced font. The width of individual initial monogram styled letters are based on width of each character. This font/webfont comes in 2 font formats; TrueType (the *.TTF file extension) and Postscript Type 1, so I have included the *AFM, *.PFM, *.PFB 'Type 1' format files together in this distribution archive.

This distribution archive has been updated with the font format archive (both the TTF & T1 versions) downloaded from Mr. Steffmann's official font catalog archive and updated with documentation and a new preview image by Doug Peters of Symbiotic Design for Font-Journal. It's been checked and validated as the most recent known available version (as of March, 2021). This text document has been created specifically for distribution with this font archive as a factual document to protect all parties. Any updates to this font or its distribution archive can be found at the dedicated Font-Journal URL for this distribution archive given a couple of paragraphs below.

This archive has been enhanced with this note as a means to document the great works Dieter Steffmann has contributed to the world. This is done in the hopes that he will always be credited for his wonderful gifts to humanity, as many of his original distribution archives lack any documentation what-so-ever (the license was given on the web page it was downloaded from, but then the license can be lost when a designer has a lot of fonts). Hopefully, it will also serve to help protect his work from modifications and derivatives.

This archive can be found at the following dedicated URL on

Please note that Dieter Steffmann has a great many free downloadable typefaces available at Font-Journal. To view all of his fonts that I have added to the font repository so far you can search his name (or use the URL below):

Note however, that Mr. Steffmann created a large volume of free fonts (over 600). I have much to do to include and document each one of his fonts (both the ones I will add and the older ones that have previously been archived before I started documenting each one).

Perhaps Dieter Steffmann didn't include documentation in his distribution archives since he made them freely available to the public without much restriction on regular use and the license was specified on the download page. But then the license gets separated from the archive and as a designer myself, I like to retain proof that a free font I downloaded is as such (a free font with its conditions of use). It will take me a while, but I will be working to get them all updated with a text sample gif & documentation, eventually. Still, it's going to take a long time, as I administrate Font-Journal as a free online font repository and cataloged font archive only in my spare time, currently without assistance.

Dieter Steffman
Is a widely talented, retired typographer living in Duetschland (AKA: Germany). Specifically, he lives in the township of Kreuztal in the Siegerland region of DE (DE is the country code abbreviation for Germany). He started computing on the Amiga (as did I). He currently has some health concerns that he shares on his Wordpress blog. He enjoys web administration, photography and hiking, now. He also posts some great photos. Dieter is also quite active on Twitter and maybe Facebook. Dieter Steffman's business alias is "Typographer Mediengestaltung" and he created hundreds of fonts between 2000-2013 that are now available free.

September 3rd



1001 Fonts has cataloged 357 of his over 600 free typefaces:

Twitter Feed: @DieterSteffmann


This font's official archive was originally downloaded from:

The Original Specific URL is:

...but that archive lacks the inclusion of documentation and a simple preview gif. As I prefer that the license info, documentation and a preview image be included with my archives so that as a designer I can always reference this information should I require it (such as when some scammer come along and pretend the font is theirs and threatens a law suit).

Therefore, I have included a new text sample PNG image with this very archive, and added this text documentation which includes the license info and a quick history lesson so that it is not lost (as in typical Font-Journal fashion for new font additions). This gives professional graphic designers and marketers an easy way to prove that it is free and OK for commercial use, as well as learn a little of the history about the author, if they want, without too much trouble. All they have to do is keep the original archive somewhere (in case the website goes offline when the Google server monopoly on internet infrastructure dependency takes the world's internet down again).

Copyright (c) Typographer Mediengestaltung, 2002. All rights reserved. Digitalisiert durch Dieter Steffmann, Kreuztal.

By using this font you hereby agree to the terms of this license agreement as put forth in this document.

Personal use is allowed.
Charity work is allowed.
Commercial use is allowed.
No derivatives are allowed.
-This means that you may not edit the font, modify the glyphs, extend the font character sets, or change the reserved font name using the source font file.

You may convert this font for use in other formats, or for use on other device platforms, so long as the font remains intact and is not modified or otherwise altered in any way, such as changing the reserved font names or altering any individual glyphs.

This font is distributed 'as is' without any warranty. Neither the author of Alpine font, nor any distributing party, shall be held liable for any damage derived from using this typeface.

You may redistribute this font, unchanged, in its original archive as freeware, but it may not be modified and you may not sell it, nor are you allowed to include it in any font archive, collection, distribution CD or DVD that is sold. Any means of benefitting from the distribution of this archive is strictly forbidden. On distribution websites, this font must be available to all visitors for no charge, this includes sans membership fees or subscription requirement.

This font may not ever be sold or published in any form without the expressed written permission by its respective author, Dieter Steffman.

The included font(s) may be embedded into any application such as a website, home page or mobile device app, independent of the number of the application users, as long as the application itself does not intend to distribute the font file(s) independent of its proper distribution archive.

FJ, Me and My Stuff...
Font-Journal is sponsored by two websites I own, promote & administrate; Domain Hostmaster (for Domain Name Registration & Transfers, Managed Wordpress & Webmaster Tools) & HD Web Hosting (Linux Apache Genuine Cloud Hosting. Heavy Duty Web Hosting for High Trafficked, High-Definition, Business Websites).

I also design fonts myself. I am setting up to feature some of the fonts I have created, but as of this writing & updating this archive, I'm still working on that website updated. Still, you can find most of them on my font repository, if you look me up:

Some of my Social Networks:

Reach me, Doug Peters (artist/designer/typographer/marketer/webmaster), at...