Imposition arranges one or more existing pages onto another page. In its simplest form, it's n-up, such as shrinking 4 pages onto 1 to save paper when printing. It's easy to arrange pages and rotations for booklets. More sophisticated use of the tool can rearrange and rotate pages to produce complex layouts, as for folded brochures.


java tool.pdf.Impose [options] PDF-file

Double-sided printing can be done with Split.

The imposition is named with -im appended to the original file name.

Note that imposing drops annotations (including hyperlinks) and bookmarks/outlines.


1. The default operation is very simple and produces the common case of shrinking 4 source pages to one new page.

java tool.pdf.Impose Annotations.pdf

2. Common paste-ups are conveniently available with -nup.

java tool.pdf.Impose -nup 6 -sep 1 Annotations.pdf


3. Complete control over page sequence and rotation.

java tool.pdf.Impose -verbose -dim 3x5 -paper A4 -layout "x,1,7u,2,8u,3,10l,4,11r,x,12,5,x,6,x" Annotations.pdf

produces the layout matrix

 0 1 7
 2 8 3
 10 4 11
 0 12 5
 0 6 0

4. Create an 8-page booklet on two pieces of paper printed front and back and folded in half. (Example from Andrew Roach.)

java tool.pdf.Impose -dim 2x1 -page 8,1,2,7,3,6,4,5 docs.pdf

5. Print business cards, by making a grid 4 wide and 10 high and copying the page 40 times.

java tool.pdf.Impose -dim 4x10 -page "1*40" docs.pdf