I have a table with fixed column widths, e.g. p{2cm}. How can I make multicolumn inherit the widths of the columns that it merges? I can sum the widths and specify p{4cm} for the multicolumn, but then if I change the original column widths then there will be inconsistencies.

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    The way I would do it: I would use \newcolumntype for all involved columns: all would record one length. Then you can create a command that computes the sum of these lengths, or whatever you want, and calls \multicolumn with the result (taking care of using only expandable stuff before \multicolumn is digested by TeX). Without a minimal working example, I'll stop here. – frougon Jul 1 at 11:21

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