Latex compile my code and it's kinda ok, but I don't understand an error it gives me

This is part of my code that doesn't work

\documentclass[paper=a4, fontsize=12pt]{scrartcl} 




\section*{Exercise 1}

\textit{Let $(\Omega, \varepslion, \mathbb{P})$ 
be a probability space, and take $\mathcal{F}(\cdot)$ 
to be a filtration of $\sigma$-algebras. 
Assume X be an integrable random variable, and define 
$X(t):=\mathbb{E}(X|\mathcal{F}(t))$ for times $t \geqslant 0$. 
Show that  $X(\cdot)$ is a martingale. 


Latex (I'm using latexian on mac) give me an error in the last line (the parenthesis } )telling "undefined control sequence". I really can't understand why it doesn't work. If I erase the }, it doesn't give me any error (but the preview tell me "error view console")

I used this code other times (same thing, different worlds in \textit{}) and always worked fine.

  • Welcome to TeX.SX! Please help us to help you and add a minimal working example (MWE) that illustrates your problem. It will be much easier for us to reproduce your situation and find out what the issue is when we see compilable code, starting with \documentclass{...} and ending with \end{document}.
    – user31729
    Commented Mar 14, 2014 at 13:43
  • 1
    The undefined control sequence is at the beginning of the error message. In your case it seems to be \varepslion where two letter are exchanged.
    – egreg
    Commented Mar 14, 2014 at 13:52
  • Thank you very much...I'm sorry to have made you lose time for such a stupid things. Thank you all
    – Caterina
    Commented Mar 14, 2014 at 13:55
  • @Caterina We've all done it at some point—there are a few questions of mine floating around on here that arose for such 'stupid' reasons. Commented Mar 15, 2014 at 3:08
  • Somewhat related errorcontextlines explanation
    – user202729
    Commented Mar 29, 2022 at 14:11

1 Answer 1


The complete error message you get is

! Undefined control sequence.
<argument> Let $(\Omega , \varepslion 
                                      , \mathbb {P})$ be a probability space...
l.20 }


An error message like this is made of four parts:

  1. The error message itself
  2. The line where the unidentified control sequence appears
  3. The continuation of the line
  4. The line where TeX stopped processing

The number line you get is where the closing brace of the argument to \textit is, because TeX doesn't interpret arguments when it absorbs them. Thus it realizes there's an error when it's too late. The error is somewhere before the }, but you can see it clearly in the LaTeXian console.

In this case it's just a typo: the correct command is \varepsilon.

Note that sometimes this error checking may be confusing: if you make a typo in the preamble, say


and use \eps in the document, the error message would point to the same location, but it will be like

! Undefined control sequence.
\eps ->\varepslion 

l.22 }

so you know that the error is in the definition of \eps.

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