May 15, 2005

Special Key Symbols

This has been an increasingly popular reference page on the Macintosh Biblioblog. Lot's of folks come here looking for the Mac key symbol for the alt key or the option key or the control key or the open apple key, or other standard symbols for the Macintosh keyboard. Apparently it is a handy reference to have all the popular symbols for the special keys on the keyboard. Here they are more or less in order from left to right, including Unicode Hex code point references:

Escape U+238B
Tab forward U+21E5
Tab back U+21E4
Capslock U+21EA
Shift U+21E7
Control U+2303
Option (Alt, Alternative) U+2325
Apple symbol 1 U+F8FF
Command (Open Apple) 2 U+2318
Space U+2423

Return U+23CE
Delete back U+232B
Delete forward U+2326
﹖⃝ Help U+003F & U+20DD

Home U+21F1

End U+21F2
Pageup U+21DE
Pagedown U+21DF

Up arrow U+2191

Down arrow U+2193

Left arrow U+2190

Right arrow U+2192
Clear U+2327
Numberlock U+21ED
Enter U+2324
Eject U+23CF
Power 3 U+233D
For information on how to type or enter these symbols in your documents, have a look at Entering Unicode Text and Symbols.
1 The Apple symbol  is in the corporate private range and is only available in Mac fonts. It can be typed with Option+Shift+k ( ⌥⇧+k ).
2 For the history on the Apple key symbol/Command key symbol, have a look here.
3 Most fonts render this code point as IEC 5010 "line within a circle", , not , IEC 5009 "line partially within a broken circle" which is found on newest keyboards, though some fonts do.

(If any symbol isn't displaying correctly, Unicode font replacement is the culprit. Everything tests great in latest versions of Safari and Firefox.)

Last updated: 9/19/12


daniel said...

Definitely, I really appreciate this post!

ZM said...

Very useful! Thank you for assembling this information in such a clear format.

One further question: Are there standard key assignments for typing any/all of these characters? If so, that would be a very useful additional column.

Thank you again for the excellent work...

Bakari said...

Thanks so much for this. I did a search and found exactly what I was looking for. David Pogue should have this in his Missing Manual book.

Unknown said...

the link: Entering Unicode Text and Symbols - doesn't work :(

Joe Weaks said...

Works for me?

Suzanne Ally said...

Not surprised to see a fellow TCU alum created this!
Harry & Suzy Ally
TCU alums

Anonymous said...

Great! Exact what many people are looking for.

Matthew Cornell said...

Thanks a ton! I can believe this isn't right up front in the user docs somewhere. I'm using it for Freemind, and now I'm close to being mouse-free.

David Eldridge said...

If I tell you how thankful I really am for this resource, I will embarrass myself. So, please let it suffice to say, thank you very much for compiling this list.

DilbertWannaBe said...

From a non-Mac user who tries to be a good citizen when writing documentation, many thanks for putting together this Unicode list.

Unknown said...

Great Post Thanks!

Danijel James said...

Thank you so much for this. Perfect for something I needed!

Andreas said...

Thanks! Based on this article I did this:



Joe Weaks said...

That's a great thing to do. I did something similar with modifier keys, but put them all into one text shortcut:
qSymbols = ⌘⌥⌃⇧⇥

parho likho said...

We’ve made sure to bring all lovers on board too by providing to them several types of heart symbols, star symbols, and flower icons. We want to support all math fanatics as well who might get bullied in class otherwise – by bringing them to ease through rapid access of their desired symbols. They can implement math symbols copy and paste functions.

etpicci said...

Just a note: there is a Unicode slot for "power", and it’s U+23FC — the one you used, U+233D is "APL Functional Symbol Circle Stile".