In order to have my vim text always bold, I found this config in stackoverflow:

 :hi MyGroup cterm=bold
 :match MyGroup /./

But somehow, it has messed up search highlighting. It is no longer highlighted, but it shouldn't have any effect on that, since it is only changing the cterm property, and not ctermfg/ctermbg.

I thought if I added the following I would fix it, but it didn't:

 :hi Search ctermbg=yellow ctermfg=black term=bold cterm=bold

Any solutions?

  • 3
    In :help :match it states that "the {group} highlighting still applies when a character is to be highlighted for 'hlsearch'..." Essentially it overrides searches. So match might not be the best way to do this.
    – Tumbler41
    Mar 12, 2019 at 20:04

2 Answers 2


Despite this seeming like a fairly simple task, I can't think of straight forward way to do this. The best way I know how is to create your own color file and change all the cterms to bold.

If you're using one of the default color schemes you can find it at .../Vim/vim##/colors where ## is the version you're running.


I do this in GUI Vim by setting the font to a bold font:

:set guifont=Menlo-Bold:h13

To choose various fonts just use :set guifont=* and you'll get a dialog chooser. After you've chosen your preferred font use :set guifont? to see the font specification that you need to put in your vimrc.

For console Vim fandom wiki says "Console Vim uses whatever font the console/terminal is using. ... Consult the documentation or manpages for your terminal... Vim cannot use a different font than the rest of the terminal." https://vim.fandom.com/wiki/Change_font

Therefore to use a bold font in console Vim, change the font of your terminal to a bold font.

  • Terminal vim doesnt support guifont.
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Oct 2, 2019 at 12:17
  • Not sure what you mean—i guess, but then all the text in the terminal would be bold?
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Oct 3, 2019 at 0:52
  • I think that's what the OP is requesting, @D.BenKnoble.
    – NeilG
    Oct 3, 2019 at 1:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.