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For some reason, the gtk2 font is different than it was some time ago. I haven't touched it, I can't remember what were the circumstances, but it has changed.

Here's a screenshot of gedit (gtk3) and firefox (gtk2) side to side: http://i.imgur.com/RCzkXvV.png

Thanks for your kind help. Note: I also haven't found anything font-related in the settings, apart from the Large Text setting in Universal Access. Is there a way to change the size of the font? Everything is too big by default.

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Alright, turns out this wasn't a "gtk2" problem, but a firefox and thunderbird problem. Only happened with them. What I did is I deleted the $HOME/.config/fontconfig folder and now everything's back to normal. I'm not sure as of why, but it works.

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