Configuring the font family

You can explicitly set which font family is picked up, either by specifying family names of fonts installed on user's system, or generic-families (e.g., 'serif', 'sans-serif', 'monospace', 'fantasy' or 'cursive'), or a combination of both. (see font tutorial)

In the example below, we are overriding the default sans-serif generic family to include a specific (Tahoma) font. (Note that the best way to achieve this would simply be to prepend 'Tahoma' in 'font.family')

The default family is set with the font.family rcparam, e.g.

rcParams['font.family'] = 'sans-serif'

and for the font.family you set a list of font styles to try to find in order:

rcParams['font.sans-serif'] = ['Tahoma', 'DejaVu Sans',
                               'Lucida Grande', 'Verdana']
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt

plt.rcParams['font.family'] = 'sans-serif'
plt.rcParams['font.sans-serif'] = ['Tahoma']

fig, ax = plt.subplots()
ax.plot([1, 2, 3], label='test')

ax.legend()
plt.show()

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