Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I can not write { and } in Emacs on my Macbook Air with a Swedish keyboard layout. In all other programs I do this by pressing alt + shift + ( for { and the corresponding keys with ) for }.

How can I type { and } in emacs?

share|improve this question
up vote 8 down vote accepted

I found the answer on

Unable to type braces and square braces in emacs

(setq mac-option-modifier nil
      mac-command-modifier 'meta
      x-select-enable-clipboard t)
share|improve this answer
This works well for Emacs app – mico Oct 11 '13 at 8:01
or this one so answer only affect the right tab – AdrieanKhisbe Nov 26 '15 at 6:33

You likely have this problem in all command-line applications and even your shell.

Disable Use Option as Meta key in Terminal » Preferences » Settings » Keyboard.

This might be a problem for you, so other options are key remapping solutions, utility applications like Butler where you can define key sequences and map them on self-defined hotkeys, or changing your keyboard using Ukelele.

share|improve this answer
this works for emacs launched by the command line, but you lose the use of alt as meta and have to type e.g. esc-x instea of M-X – mico Oct 11 '13 at 8:03
@mico That's why this might be a problem for you. You need to choose an option here. Workarounds are Esc for Meta, or changing the keyboard layout. (Or, well, :-) ) – Daniel Beck Oct 11 '13 at 8:19

I tried fondling with my keypad and found out that ctrl + alt + 8 or 9 works for curly brackets { or }

share|improve this answer
fondling sounds creepy. – Carl B Aug 15 '14 at 16:15

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.