Duolingo is the most popular way to learn languages in the world. Best of all, it's 100% free!


Typing accented characters in Linux and Mac OS X

  • 11
  • 11
  • 3
  • 3

Brief instructions on how to enter Spanish accented characters and Spanish symbols in Linux and Mac OS X.

Mac OS X:

¡ - Option-1

¿ - Shift-Option-/

á, í - etc. Option-e then letter

ñ - Option-n then n


First, find your keyboard layout settings and define a Compose key. I normally use RightAlt. Once defined, tap and release each key below (that is, it's not used like a shift key, but a pre-modifier key):

¿ - Compose ? ?

¡ - Compose ! !

á, í, etc. - Compose ' (letter)

ñ - Compose ~ n

Personally I prefer the Linux method, it's more intuitive and you can usually figure out a new character. For example, the Euro sign is Compose C =

There's another insight here that explains Windows.

6 years ago



Firefox has an addon that takes care of this, AbcTajpu (not sure why it is named that). This is useful for your linux users.

6 years ago


Thanks, I had tried it out before reading this, but had been holding down the compose key. Thanks for your instructions.

5 years ago