Take the 2-minute tour ×
TeX - LaTeX Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of TeX, LaTeX, ConTeXt, and related typesetting systems. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I'm trying to make a list of symbols and I have something like this

P --- pressure

eta --- viscosity

lambda(P,T) --- thermal conductivity


I need to align this list with dash symbol. I tried to make it with nomencl package and tabbing but it didn't help me.

share|improve this question

3 Answers 3

up vote 6 down vote accepted

You can capture this using table. See below:

$P$ &---& pressure\\
$\eta$ &---& viscosity\\
$\lambda(P,T)$ &---& thermal conductivity\\

Note: I have edited the answer to include p{<width>} for long sentences.

share|improve this answer
Thx for the answer, I used the variant with tabular, and it works well for short descriptions. Unfortunately I have a long sentences and it doesn't fit to the page and some of them are staying to far from the first symbol. How can I move part of this senteces to the new line with no indent? –  anatoly Jul 19 '13 at 11:48
@anatoly you'll need for example a p{<width>} type column, see the array documentation for details. –  clemens Jul 19 '13 at 11:50
@cgnieder: I have updated the answer as well. –  Jagath AR Jul 19 '13 at 13:06
Thank you very much indeed –  anatoly Jul 20 '13 at 14:56

The KOMA-Script classes have a list that basically does what you want:

\begin{labeling}[<separator>]{<widest label>}

This evironment can be used with the standard classes, too, by loading the scrextend package. The list would then maybe look like:

  \item[$P$] pressure 
  \item[$\eta$] viscosity
  \item[$\lambda(P,T)$] thermal conductivity

You can probably make nomencl use the list and you can definitely customize acro or glossaries to use it. Here's a way with acro:

enter image description here

\usepackage{scrextend}% only if you don't use a KOMA-Script class

  {\labeling[---]{\hspace*{4em}}}% choose length for widest label

  short = \ensuremath{P} ,
  long  = pressure ,
  sort  = pressure
  short = \ensuremath{\eta} ,
  long  = viscosity ,
  sort  = viscosity
  short = \ensuremath{\lambda(P,T)} ,
  long  = thermal conductivity ,
  sort  = conductivity thermal


share|improve this answer

There are many ways, the following uses a simple tabular (for more than one page, package longtable can be used):


\begin{tabular}{@{}>{$}l<{$}@{ --- }l@{}}
 p & pressure \\
 \eta & viscosity \\
 \lambda(P,T) & thermal conductivity \\



  • The dash symbol is added in the tabular's preamble between the first and second column.
  • Math mode is enabled for the first column with the help of package array and its specification with > and >.
share|improve this answer
You should probably use p{<width>} column type if you have quite long descriptors. –  Martin - マーチン Jul 19 '13 at 10:17
@Martin: Or X of package tabularx (or its combinations with longtable. –  Heiko Oberdiek Jul 19 '13 at 10:33

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.