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`\boldmath`

& `\unboldmath`

Synopsis (used in paragraph mode or LR mode):

\boldmath \(math\)

or

\unboldmath \(math\)

Declarations to change the letters and symbols in `math` to be in
a bold font, or to countermand that and bring back the regular
(non-bold) default. They must be used when not in math mode or display
math mode (see Modes). Both commands are fragile
(see \protect).

In this example each `\boldmath`

command takes place inside an
`\mbox`

,

we have $\mbox{\boldmath \( v \)} = 5\cdot\mbox{\boldmath \( u \)$}$

which means `\boldmath`

is only called in a text mode, here LR
mode, and explains why LaTeX must switch to math mode to set `v`

and `u`

.

If you use either command inside math mode, as with ```
Trouble: \(
\boldmath x \)
```

, then you get something like ‘`LaTeX Font Warning:
Command \boldmath invalid in math mode on input line 11`’ and ‘`LaTeX
Font Warning: Command \mathversion invalid in math mode on input line
11`’.

There are many issues with `\boldmath`

. New documents should use
the `bm` package provided by the LaTeX Project team. A complete
description is outside the scope of this document (see the full
documentation on CTAN) but even this small example

\usepackage{bm} % in preamble ... we have $\bm{v} = 5\cdot\bm{u}$

shows that it is an improvement over `\boldmath`

.