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Colorful and legible themes
ef-themes- (.sig), 2024-May-10, 820 KiB
Protesilaos Stavrou <>
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Full description

Ef (εὖ) themes for GNU Emacs


The ef-themes are a collection of light and dark themes for GNU Emacs whose goal is to provide colorful ("pretty") yet legible options for users who want something with a bit more flair than the modus-themes (also designed by me).

Old versions

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This document contains the release notes for each tagged commit on the project's main git repository:

The newest release is at the top. For further details, please consult the manual:

Version 1.7.0 on 2024-04-28

This version contains minor refinements for many of the themes in the collection. It also introduces two new themes which, according to private feedback I have received, are already well received.

Experience the ef-dream and ef-reverie themes

Both themes revolve around the use of gold tones and subtle complementary colours.

I announced them here:

The ef-themes now cover a wide range of tastes, all while conforming with a high legibility standard (minimum WCAG AA, though many qualify for WCAG AAA).

Refinements for some themes

These are small changes that improve the consistency of the given theme.


The preprocessor semantic palette mapping uses a cyan-green colour instead of a vibrant green. This is to better differentiate elements in code, while remaining faithful to the style of the theme.


The preprocessor semantic palette mapping is redefined from a faint yellow to a firebrick red. This is to ensure that the various combinations of elements in code are easy to tell apart while remaining pleasant to look at.


The green-faint value has reduced contribution from the blue channel of light, making it more green-yellow as a result. This colour is only used for comments: it achieves the two-fold goal of (i) applying subtle colouration to comments while (ii) making them sufficiently distinct from their context.


The value of the preprocessor is a bit darker red than its former brighter variant. This is to improve the visuals in files that include a high concentration of preprocessor constructs.

  • The cyan-warmer entry in the palette is a bit less blue and more green. The change is imperceptible on its own (from #3f6faf to #3f70a0). The effect is more noticeable in the context of other constructs, such as in an Org document that combines headings of varying levels, with code and verbatim inline elements, as well as links.
  • The comment semantic palette mapping uses a slightly more orange value. This is done for stylistic consistency with the rest of the theme, while making comments a bit easier to spot.

As with its light counterpart, the comment entry in the palette uses a slightly different colour value. The effect is subtle and only appreciated in context.


The yellow-faint palette entry is considerably more yellow than its previous value. The reason for this change is to make comments and tags in Org headings stand out more when compared to some other subtle elements. The exact value of this yellow still feels ice-cold, like the rest of the theme.


The comment semantic palette mapping uses a slightly more cyan … …