Special Characters and Symbols


How to type them using HTML and ASCII


We all need to insert special characters, or symbols, into our documents from time to time.  Many just give up and type the word in (for example,  10 cents).  But you should do it the right way - here's how for the most common symbols.  For uncommon symbols, view the charts.  The two most common character sets are:

HTML by default supports the character set ISO-8859-1 or Latin-1.   Windows and virtually all Windows-based HTML editors use Windows-1252 which is basically the same as ISO-8859-1.

How to insert Symbols into your Document (Notepad, Word, HTML, etc.)


Here is how to create the few symbols that are more common.  There is a full table of them Here.


In general, although HTML has different combinations than ASCII symbols - you can use the same ASCII code for HTML except you precede it with two characters: &#, and if the ASCII code has a leading zero, you drop it with HTML.  


CAUTION:  when you paste in HTML code for symbols using the HTML layout tab in FrontPage - it assumes you want that actual text to appear in Normal View - and therefore it adds four characters:   "amp;"     to the code.  For example, if you copy and paste &#0162 into the HTML view, it will instead paste in &#0162   -  so make sure to delete the "amp;" characters after you paste in the HTML symbol code.


NOTE: the use of HTML "symbol names" (symbol shortcuts), such as &trade and &copy are not well supported across the browsers !!!  Although this has gotten much more ubiquitous with the newer versions of browsers lately   . 



Common Symbols (    SM         Ω               )


NOTE:  the "Alt" key is not part of ASCII - it is just included here to show how to enter that particular character on your keyboard


Trademark symbol : ASCII Alt-0153 - HTML: &#8482 ("supposedly" &trade also work in HTML but it does not work for me)



Service Mark symbol SM :  no ASCII code.  For HTML just use "SM" with superscript


Registered Trademark Symbol : ASCII Alt-0174 - HTML &#174 OR &reg (works)

NOTE:  use of the Trademark, Service Mark, and Registered mark - anyone who claims rights in a mark may use the TM (trademark) or SM (service mark) designation with the mark to alert the public to the claim.  The registration symbol, (R), may only be used when the mark is registered in the PTO. It is improper to use this symbol at any point before the registration issues.

Division Symbol  : ASCII Alt-00F7


Copyright Symbol : ASCII Alt-0169 - HTML &#0169 OR &copy (works)


Cent Symbol : ASCII Alt-0162 - HTML &#0162



Ohms Symbol Ω : ASCII Alt-1002 - HTML &#1002


Dashes - the three types


NOTE:  some "fancy" fonts do not have the en dash or the em dash characters, but all of your basic fonts have them  



Dash (Hyphen)  -  :  ASCII Alt-45  -  HTML  &#45 OR &ndash


Short Dash    (en-dash) :  ASCII Alt-0150  -  HTML  &#8211 OR ("supposedly" &ndash also work in HTML but it does not work for me)


Long Dash  —  (em-dash) :  ASCII Alt-0151  -  HTML (4 ways):