Posted on 11/04/2007. By Pete Otaqui.
Thanks apple for this great reference on adding accents to characters on your os x 10.4 mac (the instrutions are similar for other versions of OS X) which really helps if you are writing French, Italian, Spanish, etc on a US, UK or International keyboard. The article explains how to enable and view the visual keyboard viewer tool from the Input Menu tab of the International pane in System Preferences, and then how to use it to visually see which characters you can type and how to get to the accenting tool.
Basically the idea is to press the Option (or ‘Alt’ key) with one of another set (which correspond to different kinds of accents) and once you’ve let go of those two to actually type the character you want to accent. The following keys work:
- Alt+e and then a vowel for the ‘acute’ accent, e.g. á, é, í, ó, ú
- Alt+` and then a vowel for the ‘grave’ accent, e.g. à, è, ì, ò, ù
- Alt+i and then a vowel for the ‘circumflex’ accent, e.g. â, ê, î, ô, û
- Alt+u and then a vowel for the ‘dieresis’ (or umlaut) accent, e.g. ä, ë, ï, ö, ü
- Alt+n and then ‘a’, ‘o’ or ‘n’ for the ’tilde’ accent, e.g. ã, õ, ñ
There are other shortcuts for capitals of some of the accented characters, but simply adding Shift when pressing the final character to be accented works just as well.