C Escape Codes

In C and C++ source code, you need to escape certain characters if you want to use them in string literals. Various other languages and tools have adopted some or all of these as well:

Sequence Description ASCII code (decimal)
\0 Null 0
\\ Backslash 7
\” Double quotation mark 34
\’ Single quotation mark 39
\? Question mark 63
\a Alarm / Bell 7
\b Backspace 8
\f Form feed 12
\n Line feed (new line) 10
\r Carriage return 13
\t Tab (horizontal) 9
\v Tab (vertical) 11

In addition to the standard escape sequences above, it is commonly also possible to use ASCII codes directly. Note that they need to be expressed in octal or hexadecimal though:

Base Sequence Examples
Octal (8) \nnn Line feed:
Question mark:
\012
\077
Hexadecimal (16) \xnn Line feed:
Question mark:
\x0a
\x3f

Code example:

printf("The \"quick\" brown fox\077jumps over\nthe lazy dog\3f");

That should output:

The "quick" brown fox
jumps over
the lazy dog?