As the title says, the option breaklines=true seems to have an undesired interaction when using literate; in the following example the closing parenthesis doesn't get colorized






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Commenting out the breaklines=true option produces the desired result. What is producing this odd behaviour and how can it be prevented?


1 Answer 1


When the breaklines=true option is given, a code that's executed after doing \lst@literate (which assigns the special meaning to the defined characters) is

\lst@ifbreaklines \lst@Def {`)}{\lst@breakProcessOther )}\fi

and this expands to

\lccode `\~=#1\lowercase {\def ~}{\lst@breakProcessOther )}

which makes the active ) expand to

\lst@breakProcessOther )

where ) is not active. All this happens when \lsthk@SelectCharTable is executed.

If, just for trying, I apply a patch with etoolbox


then the right parenthesis will be printed red, but a similar problem will appear with the ] in case, say,


is specified (the right bracket will become a black right parenthesis, which I expected).

I believe this has to do with precautions listings makes in order to correctly treat parenthesized expressions. And I suspect that not much can be done about this.

If I try to patch the definition of \lsthk@SelectCharTable removing that conditional part, then the right parenthesis comes out red. But I don't know if other problems will arise.

  • Surely, the fact that breaklines breaks literate replacements is not the intended behaviour. Should this be reported as a bug?
    – jub0bs
    Commented Dec 9, 2013 at 14:22
  • @Jubobs I believe so.
    – egreg
    Commented Dec 9, 2013 at 14:46
  • There is an explanation underneath the line \lst@ifbreaklines \lst@Def {`)}{\lst@breakProcessOther )}\fi in listings.dtx: A bug [...] has been removed by using \lst@ProcessOther instead of \lst@AppendOther. I guess fixing that original bug introduced another, which is the object of Gonzalo's question...
    – jub0bs
    Commented Mar 9, 2014 at 13:54

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