I vaguely seem to recall reading that \newenvironment* gives better spacing than \newenvironment, but I don't recall any details and I can't seem to find a reference by searching. What is the difference between these two, and when should one be used rather than the other?

[Note: I'll be happy for this to be closed as a duplicate, as long as someone can point to the question of which it is a duplicate; I cannot seem to locate such a question.]

  • 3
    The relation is the same as between \newcommand and \newcommand*: if there are arguments to \begin{foo}, then they are allowed to contain empty lines in the former case and aren't in the latter. See tex.stackexchange.com/questions/1050/…
    – egreg
    Commented Dec 10, 2012 at 21:25
  • @egreg: So, to check my understanding: If we are defining a new environment called foo, then using \newenvironment* rather than \newenvironment will have no effect on what is allowed in between \begin{foo} and \end{foo}, but will have an effect on what is allowed inside arguments to \begin{foo}. And there is no effect on spacing. Is this correct? Commented Dec 10, 2012 at 21:34
  • @CharlesStaats Exactly right
    – Joseph Wright
    Commented Dec 10, 2012 at 21:37
  • 5
    So as not to encourage more close votes, there's been further discussion in chat to not close this question as a duplicate. See chat.stackexchange.com/transcript/message/7216046#7216046 and following discussion.
    – Alan Munn
    Commented Dec 10, 2012 at 21:44

1 Answer 1


The relation is the same as that between \newcommand and \newcommand*, which is covered in What's the difference between \newcommand and \newcommand*?

There's no influence on the environment's behavior, except as regards to the arguments to \begin{envname}.

Specifically, if you say

 {something with #1}
 {something else}

you're allowed to say

\begin{foo}{An argument 

  with a blank line}
The environment's contents

With perhaps a blank line

while \newenvironment*{foo} wouldn't allow this and the argument should not contain any blank line (or \par command), but the environment's contents has no limitation (other than those possibly imposed by its definition).

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