This is LaTeX2e.

The \emph command is considered more suitable for short stretches of emphasized text. Like the LaTeX 2.09 \em command it toggles between italics and Roman typefaces. A typical use would be

  This is \emph{emphasized text}.

See also Typefaces, Sizes
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Sheldon Green, agxsg@giss.nasa.gov, 11 May 1995.