Glyph – Escaping and Quoting

Glyph doesn’t require any special control characters like LaTeX, and its macro syntax is very straightforward and liberal. This however comes with a price: because square brackets are used as delimiters, you must escape any square bracket in your text with a backslash. That’s not too bad if you think about it, unless you’re writing programming code, in which case escaping every single square bracket can be painful.

If a portion of your text contains an excessive amount of square brackets, you may consider using the escape macro (or its alias .) with the [= and =] delimiters. By itself, the escape macro doesn’t do anything: it just evaluates to its contents, but the special delimiters act as an escape for any square bracket within them. As a consequence, any macro within [= and =] will not be evaluated.

You can use the quoting delimiters with any macro identifier. Obviously, using them as delimiters for things like section macros may not be a good idea, but they should be more or less mandatory with the codeblock macro or the highlight macro, especially when it contains square brackets or even Glyph code, like this:

 1codeblock[=
 2  section[
 3    @title[A section]
 4    @id[test]
 5This is a section.
 6    section[
 7    @title[A nested section]
 8This is another section.
 9    ]
10  ]
11=]

Besides square brackets, there are other characters that must or can be escaped with backslashes, as shown in the following table:

Escape Sequence Evaluates to... Notes
\[ [ Square brackets must be escaped unless used as macro delimiters or within a quoting macro.
\] ] Square brackets must be escaped unless used as macro delimiters or within a quoting macro.
\\ \ Backslashes do not have to be escaped by default, but an escaped backslash will evaluate to itself.
\= = Equal signs do not have to be escaped by default, but an escaped equal sign will evaluate to iself.
\| | Pipes must be escaped (even within quoting macros) unless they are used to separate macro parameters.
\/ An escaped dot evaluates to nothing. Useful to separate macro identifiers from other characters:
_\/=>[#link|This link is emphasized using Textile]_