I want to be able to display colored emojis in XTerm, for example those from Noto Color Emoji of the fonts-noto-color-emoji font package. Like this question, but specifically for XTerm.

  • Internet search found this post bugs.archlinux.org/task/58706 where XTerm maintainer Thomas Dickey commented "I'll add a workaround in xterm", so I guess, in principle, it should be possible to use colored emojis with XTerm. But I cannot work out how.
    – finefoot
    Apr 10, 2020 at 8:47
  • Does it have to be XTerm, or can we suggest other terminal emulators? Apr 10, 2020 at 9:54
  • @ctrl-alt-delor Thanks for the reply :) I'm looking for a solution specifically for XTerm. I have linked another question which discusses other terminal emulators in my text above. No issues there.
    – finefoot
    Apr 10, 2020 at 10:23

1 Answer 1


I faced the same issue, found a workaround. When starting xterm with a font emojis show up (font-symbola might be required):

xterm -fa '$FONTNAME'


xterm -fa 'Overpass Regular' -fs 11

xterm with overpass regular

xterm -fa 'Dank Mono' -fs 11

xterm with dank mono

[...] on 🌱 develop [!] via ⬢ v14.7.0 
❯ echo "👍🥳🏆 "

emoji test

  • This makes colored emojis like 👍🥳🏆 show up for you?
    – finefoot
    Sep 16, 2020 at 8:30
  • @finefoot ⬢ and ❯ didn't work before and show up now. 👍 works, 🥳 doesn't work, 🏆 works. note: they do not look colored, only a "flat white 2d" version is shown. Edit: I added a screenshot to my answer.
    – felixhu
    Sep 17, 2020 at 6:59
  • Yes okay, but please look at the title of this question: colored emojis are exactly what I'm looking for 😉 So your answer unfortunately doesn't help me
    – finefoot
    Sep 19, 2020 at 1:19
  • the package font-symbola points out that my answer is not about colored emojis, but about a work around to not have undefined symbols 😉😉
    – felixhu
    Sep 21, 2020 at 6:53

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