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Maybe this was done to emulate font bleed that happens in the printing process. It's a common problem that latex PDFs look too light, because the build int fonts where copied from mechanical type, which assumed the ink would bleed on the page.

Eh, I think everyone serious about typography agrees that Computer Modern is just unreasonably thin. This is easily enough for me to consider it a lousy font that should literally never be used on screen, and I’m dubious about usage on paper. Unfortunately stockholm syndrome applies.

If you’re interested about the general topic, though, give https://mbtype.com/pdf/equity-type-specimen.pdf#page=5 a read!

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