The title says it all. I would like to typeset the time-derivative of a vector whose symbol shall be \hat{x}. The documentclass svjour3 is used in Springer journals. The following MWE reproduces the behaviour in the article class:



    \dot{\vec{\hat{x}}}  % Failure
    \vec{\dot{\hat{x}}}  % OK
    \dot{\hat{\vec{x}}}  % OK

Pdflatex output contains

! Undefined control sequence.
\macc@adjust ->\dimen@ \macc@kerna 
                                   \advance \dimen@ \macc@kernb \kern -\dimen@ 

How can I typeset such a vector in the svjour3 class?

  • The code as posted has \if@m which tests if @ is m so it is always false. Sep 11 '14 at 13:56
  • Where is that if@mahtematic even coming from? And why does your mwe use article but you talk about svjour3?
    – Johannes_B
    Sep 11 '14 at 13:58
  • 1
    The code posted runs without error and the warning Package amsmath Warning: Unable to redefine math accent \vec. Sep 11 '14 at 13:58
  • I figured that not everybody has access to the class svjour3 thus I copied the vector definition into an article in order to construct a mwe. Sep 11 '14 at 14:24
  • @user1225999 but you need to check that your "mwe" is actually an example of the problem, the above code clearly is not. Sep 11 '14 at 14:34

The svjour3 class uses a wrong way for redefining \vec.

Just load the class and do


Full example


\let\vec\mathbf % fix svjour3 wrong definition




enter image description here

If you prefer bold italic vectors, add \usepackage{bm} and do



  • I assume the author of the svjour3 class had his/her reasons to define the vector this way. In what way does your definition behave differently? Sep 11 '14 at 14:28
  • 1
    @user1225999 I can see no good reason in defining \vec that way. The only reason I see is: let's port this code from a very old version of LaTeX to the new version, changing {\bf#1} into \mathbf{#1}.
    – egreg
    Sep 11 '14 at 14:39
  • @egreg -- it seems that your example shows up a bug (haven't tracked down where). the middle "x" really shouldn't be italic; it should be bold and upright like the other two. (but not your fault.) Sep 11 '14 at 18:40
  • @barbarabeeton Math accents in amsmath should be revised.
    – egreg
    Sep 11 '14 at 20:04
  • @egreg -- true, but an amsmath overhaul hasn't been scheduled, and probably won't be soon. i think i'll suggest that the maintainer of mathtools do it there as a "temporary" expedient. Sep 11 '14 at 20:14

According to this answer https://tex.stackexchange.com/a/251672/45962

The cleanest way to do it is:


Like that, amsmath is loaded first and defines \vec, then svjour3 can redefine the command.

Unfortunately, you have to put the \vec into the outermost braces:

    \vec{\dot{\hat{x}}} %OK
    %\dot{\vec{\hat{x}}} %Failure
    %\dot{\hat{\vec{x}}} %Failure
  • I don't think this will actually solve the problem in the question, as that problem is caused by the definition in svjour3.cls, as I understand it. Dec 3 '15 at 14:50
  • First, it did in my case. Second, like this, you don't have to redefine '\vec{ }' as the other solutions did.
    – das_rump
    Dec 14 '15 at 14:40
  • So if you try the example at bitbucket.org/snippets/torbjornt/ayyMb it compiles without error? That is not the case here, but it works fine after uncommenting the \let statement. (Admittedly, the error I get is not the same as reported in the question.) Dec 14 '15 at 15:48
  • I tried your example. I have to admit, that it does NOT compile. However, if you put the arguments in this exact order: \vec{\hat{\dot{x}}} it does. I'm sorry, i'll edit my answer.
    – das_rump
    Dec 16 '15 at 14:16
  • Fair enough, so that's one more combination that works, but the combination that the OP wants to use is different -- the dot on top of the hat. Dec 16 '15 at 14:22

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