How to type and efficiently (such as with a simple key combination) on Mac OS X?

5 Answers 5


Solution 1: using Emacs

If you have an Emacs window open almost all the time like I do, you can use Emacs to do it, on macOS or other OSs. Specifically, Ctrl-x, Enter, then start typing the character's name, namely, "LEFT DOUBLE ANGLE BRACKET". As you finish typing more and more letters, type Tab to prompt a list of matching characters, until it auto-completes it to the unique one.

Solution 2: using Chinese input method

These characters are CJK book quotation marks. Many Chinese input methods map < to and Shift+< to , respectively. So, if you install a Chinese input method, switch to Chinese mode, and type < or Shift+<, you will get and . To type the normal English keyboard <, just switch the input method back to English.


For « and »


For ‹ and ›

  • The guillemet characters are NOT the same as the angle brackets, which are what the original post asked for.
    – qazwsx
    Sep 29, 2021 at 3:29
  • 1
    @qazwsx《 》and «» is indeed different symbol. « is Guillemet symbol while 《 is used in Japanese/Chinese symbol. I don't know the built-in shortcut for 《. But for Guillemet, you can see the shortcuts in this wiki page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guillemet.
    – aldok
    Sep 29, 2021 at 7:20
  • 1
    Not the answer to the question on the page, but it is the answer I was looking for and that Google brought me to. So no upvote, but at least accept some kudos 🙂 Aug 9, 2022 at 11:31

I'm writing from the year 2021, using macOS 11.1 on an American English keyboard.

name character keypress
left single guillemet Option Shift 3
right single guillemet Option Shift 4
left double guillemet « Option \
right double guillemet » Option Shift \

This is the same content as a 2018 answer, with better markup.


If you are in the Telegram Mac desktop client (possibly, but not verified) you can type two <s and it will substitute the left Guillemet (and like«wise for two >s, the right Guillemet). I found this by accident, not being able to get them in otherwise, and was going to use << but I to the proper mark, the left Guillemet, «

That's a lot simpler than doing it here on FF where I had to use the "Symbols and Emoji" option under edit, and find them under the "Parentheses" option. Or do and HTML edit if the application allows and use e.g., &laquo;. Find a chart for "HTML Entities".

Edit, (2021.09.03 19.41h PDT [GMT -7]): This no longer appears to be the case. Two < will just give you << and not «.

  • This should be the accepted solution. Apr 22, 2021 at 15:11

Import a file like this to TextExpander:

rdab, 》
rab, 〉

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