Software & AppsOperating SystemLinux

What is the “Grave” button on your keyboard?

Ubuntu 20

The “Grave” button on your keyboard, often overlooked and underused, plays a significant role in various keyboard shortcuts and commands. This article will delve into the specifics of the “Grave” button, its functions, and how it can be utilized effectively.

Quick Answer

The "Grave" button on your keyboard, also known as the "grave accent", is a key that has various functions in computing and programming. It can be used as a keyboard shortcut to switch between windows, define template literals or multiline strings in programming, and execute commands within commands in command line interfaces.

Definition of the “Grave” Button

The “Grave” button, also known as the “grave accent”, is represented by the symbol and is typically located above the "Tab" key on most standard keyboards. However, its placement can vary depending on the keyboard layout and language settings. For instance, on some keyboards, it may be the key, while on others it could be the § or º key.

Functions of the “Grave” Button

The “Grave” button is not just an ordinary key; it has several functions, especially in the world of computing and programming.

Keyboard Shortcuts

In the Unity interface, the combination of Alt+Grave is used as a keyboard shortcut to switch between windows of the current application. This function can significantly enhance your productivity by making navigation between different windows a breeze.

Programming and Command Line

In programming languages like JavaScript and Python, the grave accent is used to define template literals or multiline strings. For example, in JavaScript:

let greeting = `Hello,

In this example, the grave accent allows the string to span multiple lines, improving the readability of the code.

In command line interfaces, the grave accent is used to execute commands within commands. For example, in Unix-based systems:

echo `date`

In this example, the date command is executed first, and its output is then passed to the echo command.

Identifying the “Grave” Button on Your Keyboard

The specific key that corresponds to the “Grave” button may vary depending on your keyboard layout and language settings. To determine the exact key that corresponds to the “Grave” button on your keyboard, you can press and hold the “SUPER” key to display the overlay, which should show the equivalent key for your specific locality.


The “Grave” button, despite its unassuming appearance, is a powerful tool that can enhance your productivity and coding efficiency. By understanding its functions and applications, you can unlock its full potential and make the most of this often-underused key.

Whether you are a programmer looking to improve your code readability, a system administrator aiming to streamline your command line operations, or just a regular user seeking to boost your productivity, the “Grave” button has something to offer. So, the next time you look at your keyboard, give the “Grave” button the attention it deserves.

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