We often see special characters like the upside-down question mark (¿) in text, but it’s not on our keyboards, so how do we type it? Where do characters like this come from? There is a way to type most of them using modifier keys such as the shift, option, and command in certain combinations.
The upside-down question mark is one of those special characters you can type using the modifier keys on your keyboard. Just press the Option+Shift+? keys at the same time and the upside-down question mark will be inserted into your text.
My name is Eric, and I have been around computers since I was a kid in the late 1970s. Displaying special characters, such as the upside-down question mark, could sometimes be difficult in the past, but now, many can be displayed with a simple key combination.
I have shown you the combination for the upside-down question mark above, but if you keep reading, I will give you more detail, show you some other ways to do this, and quickly discuss what this character is normally used for.
- Typing the Upside Down Question Mark
- Another Way to Insert This Character
- Displaying the Upside Down Question Mark Symbol in HTML
Typing the Upside Down Question Mark
If you need to type the upside-down question mark (¿) on your Mac for whatever reason, it is fairly straightforward to do. To do this, you must use the Option, Shift, and ? keys. Press all three simultaneously, and the character will be inserted into your text.
So, you can see that inserting the upside-down question mark into your text is a quick and easy process using the keyboard, but are there other ways to do this? The answer is yes, and I will show you in the next section.
Another Way to Insert This Character
Another way to insert the upside-down question mark symbol on your Mac is to use the emoji and symbols popup table.
You can bring this table up on your screen by pressing the CONTROL+COMMAND+SPACE or pressing the fn key with the globe symbol in your keyboard’s lower-left corner. This will bring up a popup window with emojis and symbols, as shown below.
In the search field at the top of the popup window, type the word question, and you will then see the upside-down question mark symbol as shown below. Find it in the list and click on it.
This will insert the symbol in the current location of your cursor in whatever text field you have active.
Displaying the Upside Down Question Mark Symbol in HTML
If you are a software developer and need to display this symbol in some HTML or other code you are writing, you can’t just put the symbol into your output text using a keyboard combination or the emoji popup. You will need to use the ASCII code or the proper HTML code.
The following are three different ways that you can code it in HTML.
- ° – HTML upside-down question mark in decimal
- ° – HTML upside-down question mark in hex
- ¿ – HTML upside-down question mark named
If you are writing in other languages, you should be able to use the decimal or hex code shown above to display the upside-down question mark symbol. You can look at the ASCII code chart for more information on how to display different characters in your code.
For many, the upside-down question mark is not a symbol we see daily; some may have other questions about it. Below are a few questions about this character.
What is the upside-down question mark used for?
The upside-down question mark is used in Spanish to denote a sentence that is a question. The upside-down question mark comes at the beginning of the sentence, and a regular question mark goes at the end. For example:
¿Qué es un signo de interrogación al revés?
What is the upside-down question mark called?
The upside-down question mark is also referred to as the inverted question mark. In Spanish, the upside down question mark is called “el signo de la interrogación invertido”.
Is the upside-down question mark inserted by the emoji table the same as the one inserted by the keyboard?
Yes, the two characters are exactly the same even when inserting the two different methods into your text.
Typing the upside-down or inverted question mark on your Mac is easy. Using the keyboard, you can just press the Shift+Option+? keys. You can also do this using the emoji and symbols popup table. If you are inserting it in HTML or some other code, you must use one of the ASCII codes available for this character.
I hope the information above has helped you to be able to insert the inverted question mark into your text. As usual, let me know if you have any questions or feedback. I would love to hear from you!