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25.11 TeX Mode

TeX is a powerful text formatter written by Donald Knuth; like GNU Emacs, it is free software. The TeX format has several variants, including LaTeX, a simplified input format for TeX; DocTeX, a special file format in which the LaTeX sources are written, combining sources with documentation; and SliTeX, an obsolete special form of LaTeX1.

Emacs provides a TeX major mode for each of these variants: Plain TeX mode, LaTeX mode, DocTeX mode, and SliTeX mode. Emacs selects the appropriate mode by looking at the contents of the buffer. (This is done by invoking the tex-mode command, which is normally called automatically when you visit a TeX-like file. See Choosing Modes.) If the contents are insufficient to determine this, Emacs chooses the mode specified by the variable tex-default-mode; its default value is latex-mode. If Emacs does not guess right, you can select the correct variant of TeX mode using the commands plain-tex-mode, latex-mode, slitex-mode, or doctex-mode.

The following sections document the features of TeX mode and its variants. There are several other TeX-related Emacs packages, which are not documented in this manual:


[1] It has been replaced by the ‘slides’ document class, which comes with LaTeX.