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My LaTeX looks as follows (I omit somethings):

\documentclass{amsbook}

\usepackage{fancyhdr,etoolbox,multicol,tabulary,booktabs,mathtools}

\pagestyle{fancy}
\fancyhf{}
\fancyhead[LE,RO]{\thepage}
\fancyhead[LO]{\nouppercase\rightmark}
\fancyhead[RE]{\nouppercase\leftmark}

\newcommand{\set}{\mathsf{Set}}
\newcommand{\grp}{\mathsf{Gr}}
\newcommand{\ab}{\mathsf{Ab}}
\newcommand{\grd}{\mathsf{Grpd}}
\newcommand{\ring}{\mathsf{Ring}}

\renewcommand{\contentsname}{Table of contents}
\makeatletter
\patchcmd{\@tocline}
  {\hfil}
  {\leaders\hbox{\,.\,}\hfil}{}{}
\makeatother

\begin{document}

\pagestyle{plain}

\frontmatter

\title{\textsc{AAAZZZ}}
\author{LZ}

\maketitle

\chapter*{Abstract}
The goal of this notes is to describe \ldots

\chapter*{List of Abbreviations and Symbols}

Below we list some abbreviations and symbols we will use.

\begin{table}[h!]
    \caption{Table of Abbreviations}
    \begin{tabular}{c || c}
        \hline
        Abbreviation & Meaning \\ [0.5ex] % inserts table %heading
        \hline\hline
        $\set$ &  the category of sets\\
        $\grp$ &  the category of all (nice) topological spaces\\
        $\ab$ &  the category of schemes\\ [1ex]
        \hline
    \end{tabular}
    \label{tab:abbr}
\end{table}

\vspace{2cm}

\begin{table}[h!]
\caption{Table of Symbols}
\begin{tabular}{c || c}
    \hline
    Symbol & Meaning \\
    \hline\hline
    $\cong$ &  isomorphism\\ [1ex]
    \hline
\end{tabular}
\label{tab:symb}
\end{table}

\tableofcontents

\mainmatter

\cleardoublepage

\pagenumbering{arabic}
\pagestyle{fancy}

\chapter{Preliminaries on A}

\chapter{Results on Z}

\appendix

\chapter{More results on Z}

\backmatter

\begin{thebibliography}{10}

\end{thebibliography}

\end{document}

The problem is that the title of the un-numbered chapter "List of Abbreviations and Symbols" doesn't appear on the top of the page—it's vertically centred, which I think is ugly. How to make it on the top of the page, and such that the two tables follow directly one by one there? I expect it to be very simple, but I don't know how.

  • 1
    why are you setting the lists as floating tables rather than use a section heading and a fixed tabular or list? – David Carlisle Dec 22 '19 at 22:24
  • Could you be more explicit, or better, give a solution? – Lao-tzu Dec 22 '19 at 22:27
  • change \begin{table}[h!] \caption{Table of Abbreviations} to \section*{Table of Abbreviations} and delete \end{table} (and the same for the other one) – David Carlisle Dec 22 '19 at 22:28
  • That works, thanks! But I still prefer the \begin{table} thing rather than \section*. – Lao-tzu Dec 22 '19 at 22:33
  • 1
    the only function of the table environment is to mark the content as a float that can be repositioned elsewhere in the document to help with page breaking. It is really strange markup to float frontmatter lists like list of symbols or tables of contents etc. – David Carlisle Dec 22 '19 at 22:38

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