{symbols} is about specific non-alphabetic symbols or math symbols, e.g., about looking-up, constructing, or using symbols. For questions about {fonts} or alphabetic {characters} use the respective tag instead.

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387
votes
13answers
67k views

How to look up a symbol or identify a math symbol or character?

I know what my symbol or character looks like, but I don't know what the command is or which math alphabet it came from. How do I go about finding this out?
195
votes
4answers
11k views

What is the use of percent signs (%) at the end of lines?

I see that the code in many packages and examples contains percent signs % at the end of (many) lines. What are they used for? Do they affect the parsing of those lines?
64
votes
3answers
8k views

Importing a Single Symbol From a Different Font

Is there a general way to change the font of a particular symbol without switching packages? For example, suppose I'm using Computer Modern for my entire document, but I want the "subset" operator to ...
47
votes
7answers
6k views

\subseteq + \circ as a single symbol (“open subset”)

I'm trying to create symbols \opn for "open subset" and \cls "closed subset". I want them to look like this: My current solution is: \def\opn{\!\ensuremath{\subseteq\!\!\!\!\!\raisebox{1pt}{$\...
67
votes
3answers
108k views

Escape character in LaTeX

I need to output the below text but since \ is a special character, I cannot: [RegularExpression(@"\d+")] Also sometimes I need use dollar sign $ as well but it seems to be a special char, too. ...
201
votes
10answers
337k views

How can I get bold math symbols?

To make Latin-letter variables bold I can use e.g. \mathbf{a}, but while putting Greek letters or symbols such as \nabla inside \mathbf doesn't cause any errors or warnings, it also doesn't do ...
115
votes
12answers
66k views

Good way to make \textcircled numbers?

I'm trying to make some good-looking numbers in a circle, using the simple command: \textcircled{1} However, the circle is misaligned vertically with the number, and look a bit sloppy: Any ...
497
votes
9answers
742k views

How does one insert a backslash or a tilde (~) into LaTeX?

How does one insert a "\" (backslash) into the text of a LaTeX document? And how does one insert a "~" (tilde)? (If you insert \~, it will give you a tilde as an accent over the following letter.) ...
151
votes
4answers
257k views

Why do the less than symbol (<) and the greater than symbol (>) appear wrong as upside down exclamation (¡) or question mark (¿)?

When typing < or > in LaTeX and compiling with pdflatex, the less than and greater than symbols appear at upside down exclamation points. I'm not in math mode.
74
votes
5answers
155k views

How to type special/accented letters in LaTeX?

How to type these special letters from European languages in latex? ä, é, and L'?
49
votes
3answers
13k views

“Closed” (square) root symbol

I found a cool trick in the LaTeX wikibook which allows the square root sign to be altered such that it "closes" over its contents. Here's an example: ("closed" root on the left, normal one on the ...
43
votes
3answers
21k views

Can I get a \widebar without using the mathabx package?

One can use \bar to put a bar over a letter in math mode, but often the bar isn't wide enough. An alternative is \overline, but this isn't an accent, so it doesn't take into account the skew of the ...
114
votes
4answers
299k views

Absolute Value Symbols

What is the "best LaTeX practices" for writing absolute value symbols? Are there any packages which provide good methods? Some options include |x| and \mid x \mid, but I'm not sure which is best...
44
votes
2answers
21k views

How to superimpose LaTeX on a picture?

I know how to add a picture to my LaTeX file, e.g. \includegraphics[width=7cm]{curve.pdf}. What I'd now like to do is place some latex symbols onto the picture. Like a \gamma to name a curve. I do not ...
99
votes
8answers
48k views

Correctly typesetting a tilde

How do I set the tilde (~) character correctly in LaTeX? There’s a question discussing that on Stack Overflow, with a lot of answers. But dare I say it? They all suck: \textasciitilde is too high, \...
127
votes
9answers
50k views

How to typeset $:=$ correctly?

I like to use $:=$ for "is defined to be equal to", but this is never typeset with the symmetry one would like, as the colon is always too low relatively to the equals sign. Is there any way of ...
80
votes
1answer
188k views

How to typset the symbol “^” (caret/circumflex/hat)

I need to display the symbol '^' d <- dist(fascores, method = "euclidean")^2 How do I do that?
39
votes
2answers
50k views

Big integral sign

Is there a possibility to draw large integral signs? I have found the package bigints but I have the feeling it is not very professional... Any better idea?
26
votes
3answers
8k views

Overlay symbol with another

Is it possible to overlay a symbol with another? I want to write an equal sign with a question mark overlayed (or the other way around). Note I don't want \stackrel{?}{=} I want the question ...
44
votes
6answers
27k views

What is the best way to use quotation mark glyphs?

There are several types of quotation marks in the English language (and in other languages there are even more). There are also several ways in LaTeX to represent these. I have seen editors, that are ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I lower the \widetilde accent, i.e., move it closer to the variable?

I sometimes find that the \widetilde accents sits too high above the math letter it is applied to. An example: To me it looks as if the first tilde is sitting just in between the two lines; it is ...
102
votes
4answers
86k views

\mid, | (vertical bar), \vert, \lvert, \rvert, \divides

What's the difference between the different vertical bars? $S = \{\, x \mid x \not= 17 \,\}$ $a \vert b$ implies $a \leq b$ when $b \ne 0$ $a|b$ implies $a \leq b$ when $b \ne 0$ $\lvert x \rvert$ is ...
21
votes
4answers
13k views

Big tilde in math mode

How do I get a really wide tilde? I need to cover at least abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz The \widetilde command does not work. Nor using \stackrel with \sim.
14
votes
3answers
2k views

Can I change the font and colour of a letter permanently?

For my lectures, I like to colour the symbols in the equations to make it easier to follow what's going on - a bit like syntax highlighting. So all vector spaces are one colour, all sets another, e ...
109
votes
7answers
137k views

Command for argmin or argmax?

How can you get the argmin or argmax in Latex? Two solutions I found are: \underset{x}{\operatorname{argmax}} \DeclareMathOperator*{\argmin}{arg\,min} Any other ideas? [1] http://www.breakthru....
31
votes
1answer
2k views

Importing single symbol from MnSymbol

I wish to use a symbol provided by the package MnSymbol but if I have a \usepackage{MnSymbol} in my document then many other symbols change, including even the equals sign (=), which appears much ...
18
votes
1answer
10k views

Colored symbols

First of all, I apologize if this is a repetitive question. I searched, but couldn't find it. I was wondering if I can change the color of symbols in latex. For example \ast always give me a black ...
21
votes
4answers
2k views

Generating a table of glyphs with XeTeX

I am trying to get XeTeX to generate a table of all the possible glyphs of a given font, but can not figure out how to make XeTeX know how many glyphs the font has, so I have to specify an exact ...
83
votes
1answer
119k views

\mathbb{Z} yields undefined control sequence error

I am using WinEdt 6 for compiling my TeX documents. I am getting an error with contains the line $\mathbb{Z}$ showing that it is undefined control sequence. How should I rectify it? Should I include ...
38
votes
6answers
41k views

Mathematical symbol for disjoint set union

In our lecture script, we use the notion of disjoint set union. It uses a special symbol to differentiate the disjoint from the usual set union, where we add an extra dot inside of the \cup symbol. Is ...
13
votes
2answers
527 views

Is there such a thing as a `\mathrule`? (rounded endcaps)

When I am creating hybrid math glyphs, I will find myself often times stacking \rules about the place. But if you look at a collection of CM math symbols (top row), and compare it to a \rule (2nd row)...
92
votes
5answers
62k views

Symbols instead of numbers as footnote markers

How can I make LaTeX use symbols (*, †, ‡, and so on) instead of numbers to mark footnotes? (The numbers are confusing because I use superscripted numbers for citations.)
77
votes
2answers
14k views

How to get rid of navigation symbols in beamer?

When creating presentations in beamer, those little symbols that you can click on and will take you to different parts of your presentation are automatically included on your slides. I don't like ...
50
votes
3answers
63k views

Label equation with a symbol

I would like to label an equation with an arbitrary symbol, rather than a number, or letter. Is this possible?
19
votes
5answers
8k views

Denoting the end of example/remark

What is the etiquette to denote the end of an example or remark? For proofs, it's the QED symbol (white box). I know it's not necessary for everyone, but I would like to use it to break up the text a ...
31
votes
3answers
21k views

Nice-looking p-th roots

When I take the pth root, the bottom of the p comes very close to the \sqrt symbol. In the New Century Schoolbook font (which I am using), the p actually intersects the \sqrt symbol, which looks even ...
17
votes
3answers
3k views

How to type NOT \delta and NOT \ll

In proximity theory, we use \delta and \ll as binary relations on the power set of a set X. How can one display NOT \delta or NOT \ll similar to how we can do \not\in. Using \not\delta and \not\ll ...
103
votes
8answers
17k views

Prettiest way to typeset “C++” (cplusplus)?

Writing "C++" in plain text results in an ugly setting, as the '+' signs are too big and too spaced: I've seen around the web several marcos for typesetting the "C++" symbol, ranging from mild ...
41
votes
7answers
17k views

Something between \frownie and \smiley

Inside a beamer presentation, I would like to compare and contrast several alternatives. For each, I would like to highlight the "pros" (with a \item[\Large\smiley]), the "cons" (with a \item[\Large\...
45
votes
2answers
45k views

\bm package versus \boldsymbol

I'm typing a bold vector small x with a tilde sign above it. Now when I want to write its derivative, I'm putting a dot on top of everything. This is giving me problems and I found one solution: \...
26
votes
5answers
6k views

Drawing stars/similar with Tikz

I'm writing a review for a book at the moment, and I thought I'd be clever and show off what LaTeX is capable of by adding a x-out-of-y stars graphic. Tikz can do many things so I would have thought ...
27
votes
2answers
3k views

How to get a \mid binary relation that grows

This question relates to one about getting a vertical bar longer than \mid. How to get a vertical bar which is longer than \mid ? However while the given \middle| solution works for me, it no longer ...
18
votes
3answers
29k views

Really wide hat symbol

Is there any way to get a hat wider than widehat? Why doesn't \widehat{abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz} really go over all of it?
11
votes
2answers
5k views

What packages will let me use Cyrillic characters in math mode?

Note I'm not actually planning on writing any, for instance, Russian prose or even any Russian words. It's just that, on paper, I've always had the habit of denoting sets by uppercase roman letters, ...
59
votes
1answer
1k views

How to get intersection point(s) of two glyphs?

Longer post I'd like to introduce you my long-term task which I wish to see solved one day. Let's have two glyphs (any fonts, glyphs, location, transformation), one fixed, one moveable and some (...
35
votes
4answers
31k views

Bold math: Automatic choice between \mathbf and \boldsymbol for Latin and Greek symbols?

This is a follow-up to this question. Suppose you want to denote vectors by upright bold letters; then \mathbf{u} works fine, except that if it's a Greek letter you have to use \boldsymbol{\omega} ...
29
votes
4answers
8k views

How to typeset special Apple Mac keyboard symbols?

Is there a standard way to typeset the special symbols of the Apple Mac keyboard? That is, the curly rectangle ⌘ and the others? If there is none, what would you suggest as workarounds?
46
votes
4answers
37k views

How to insert pipe symbol in (La)TeX?

How to insert pipe symbol | in TeX (LaTeX)? I have tried this sample with pdflatex tmp.tex \documentclass{extarticle} \begin{document} \textpipe \end{document} And it give undefined control ...
21
votes
2answers
5k views

How to use phonetic IPA characters in LaTeX

I wish to write a paper about linguistics, so I thought about trying LaTeX. Sadly I couldn't figure out how to write the unique characters I need for my work, for example epsilon with a little tilde ...
39
votes
4answers
36k views

Smileys in LaTeX

I would like to include smileys in my LaTeX document. Is there any package with lots of different smileys? In mnsymbol and wasysym, I found some general symbols: \documentclass{article} \usepackage{...