# repeating an equation and getting the same equation number?

Let's say I have written an equation in my paper and numbered it:

y = a + bx    (1)


Then, later in the paper, I want to remind the reader by showing the same equation with the same equation number.

Sure, I can repeat the equation, but LaTeX gives it a new equationn number:

y = a + bx     (2)


How do I force LaTeX to use the original equation numbers?

• I'm not sure whether I wouldn't be confused by such thing in a document, because when I search for a specific eq. number, I simply follow the numbers on the border and this makes a mess there. What you want to achieve is similar to including a term "foo" between "bar" and "baz" in a dictionary. I would recommend you to say it only in the text: "Let us recall the equation (1): ..."
– yo'
Commented Aug 18, 2012 at 6:37
• Kind of duplicate of this: tex.stackexchange.com/q/33750/586 Same question, except that in that case a LyX answer was asked for. (A LaTeX answer is also given.) Commented Aug 18, 2012 at 7:54

Use the \label, \ref mechanism; once you have \labelled the equation you can use \ref inside \tag to retrieve the number:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}

\begin{document}

$$\label{eq:test} a = b + c.$$

$$a = b + c. \tag{\ref{eq:test}}$$

\end{document}


As Niel de Beaudrap mentions in his comment, one way to avoid equation numbering confusion for the reader would be to add "revisited" to the tag of the duplicated equation:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}

\begin{document}

$$\label{eq:test} a = b + c.$$

$$a = b + c. \tag{\ref{eq:test} revisited}$$

\end{document}


Small addition: Use equation* in stead of equation when repeating the number so that LaTeX knows it should not use a new number. This avoids warnings when using e.g. the hyperref package. Thus:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{amsmath}

\begin{document}

$$\label{eq:test} a = b + c.$$

\begin{equation*}
a = b + c. \tag{\ref{eq:test} revisited}
\end{equation*}

\end{document}

• Commented Mar 2, 2013 at 9:38
• Using unstarred align instead of equation* doesn't give me any hyperref warning and skips the number properly [i.e., (1), (1 revisited), (2), ...]. Commented May 7, 2015 at 11:18
• @GonzaloMedina Is there a way not to have to type the whole thing again? It seems kinda silly to type it again, not to mention error prone. Thanks for your excellent answer btw. Commented Oct 11, 2016 at 9:28
• @tBuLi But you do not need to type it again. Just copy paste it! Commented Sep 2, 2018 at 8:08
• @tBuLi you can define a new command that types your equation like \newcommand{\myeq}{a + b = y}. Then call it with \myeq. That way, if you need to correct your equation, you just need to do it in one place. Commented Jun 19, 2019 at 15:24