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How to look up a symbol?

I was surprised to learn How to write “ä” and other umlauts and accented letters in bibliography?. Our BibTeX database consists of entries in the latin-1 encoding, which means that, to do it properly, the accented characters will have to be converted to the format suggested in the linked question: {\"a} for ä, {\^e} for ê, {\`i} for ì and so on.

Where can I find a comprehensive list of these escaped characters?

  • Not exactly. I wanted to know how to look up the BibTeX format, it is lucky to have it all in one document, but still...
    – krlmlr
    Jul 20, 2012 at 2:20
  • I changed "character codes" to "escaped characters" in your question to avoid confusion with category codes.
    – doncherry
    Jul 20, 2012 at 9:13

1 Answer 1


Look in the first section, about pp 14-20 of the Comprehensive Symbol List. http://www.ctan.org/tex-archive/info/symbols/comprehensive/. This document is also accessible through the command

texdoc comprehensive
  • 1
    and texdoc symbols
    – cmhughes
    Jul 20, 2012 at 2:09
  • 2
    @user946850: I'll second R. Schumacher's suggestion to study the LaTeX Comprehensive Symbols List. Table 5 on p. 10 and Table 17 on p. 14 should be particularly useful. Be sure to use a font encoding such as T1 (utf8 won't do any harm) if you need to generate ogonek accents. Remember that for BibTeX purposes you'll need to encase the accented characters in curly braces; i.e., write {\k a} rather than \k{a} as is suggested in Table 17.
    – Mico
    Jul 20, 2012 at 2:50

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