Greek is one of the oldest languages having great importance in world history. Though ancient Greek language had different set of alphabets, the modern version has total 48 letters – 24 capital and 24 small letters. There are many Greek alphabets used in mathematics like Pi (Π), Sigma (Σ), Theta (Θ), etc. Generally, you can use the equation editor in Word and other applications to type these Greek alphabets in your documents. However, it is also easy to insert Greek letters using alt code shortcuts in Window, Mac and HTML webpages using standard English keyboard. In addition, you can also use other tools like Character Map in Windows and Character Viewer in Mac.
Summary – Shortcut Codes for Greek Alphabets
Here is a summary of shortcut codes for all Greek alphabets. Note that the small sigma has two variations and hence you will have total 49 letters in the list.
How to Use Above Table?
You can use the decimal code with alt key in Windows, hexadecimal code with option key in macOS and HTML entity string in HTML for webpages as explained in the below sections.
1. Type Greek Alphabets in Windows
You have multiple methods in Windows computers either using alt code shortcut or with other options.
1.1. Decimal Code with Alt Key
- Press and hold one of the alt keys on your keyboard.
- Type the decimal code for a Greek alphabet using number pad.
- Release the alt key.
- Decimal code will be converted into a Greek alphabet.
For example, alt + 0937 will make Capital Omega like Ω. However, you should have a long keyboard with separate number pad for this method to work. You can also purchase an external number pad and attach to your laptop keyboard if required.
1.2. Hexadecimal Code with Alt Key
- Open Microsoft Word document.
- Type the hexadecimal code for a Greek alphabet.
- Press alt and x keys together.
- Hexadecimal code will be converted to corresponding Greek alphabet.
For example, 03BB alt + x will make small Lamda like λ. Though you can use standard keyboard keys for typing hexadecimal code, this method will work only on Microsoft Word documents.
1.3. Using Emoji Keyboard
- Open your document and place the cursor in the needed position.
- Press “Win + Dot” keys to open emoji keyboard.
- Click “Symbols” category, use the small right side arrow to navigate to “Language Symbols” section.
- Find and insert the Greek alphabet you want and close the emoji keyboard.
1.4. Greek Alphabets in Character Map
- Press “Win + R” keys to open Run prompt.
- Type charmap and press enter key.
- In Character Map app, make sure the “Character set” is selected as “Unicode” and then select “Unicode Subrange” from “Group by” dropdown.
- Select “Greek” option in “Group by” pop-up to view all Greek alphabets.
- Click on a letter and then click “Select” and “Copy” buttons to copy the letter to clipboard.
- Now, you can paste the copied letter in any application.
1.5. Using Equation Editor in Office Apps
- Open Word, Excel or PowerPoint.
- Go to “Insert” menu and click on “Equation” icon from the ribbon under “Symbols” group.
- Click the filter showing in “Symbols” group.
- Select “Greek Letters” category and you will see the list of both capital and small Greek alphabets.
- Click on the letter to insert it inside the equation placeholder.
Remember, equations will not align with the text on your document. Therefore, we recommend to use Greek alphabets like normal text using one of the other explained methods.
2. Type Greek Alphabets in Mac
Mac also offers multiple ways to insert Greek alphabets.
2.1. Hexadecimal Code with Option Key
- First, change the input method to Unicode Hex Input.
- Hold one of the option keys from Mac keyboard.
- Type the hexadecimal code for a Greek letter.
- Leave your hand off from option key.
- The code will be converted to corresponding letter.
- Change the input method back to your default.
For example, option + 03B5 will make small Epsilon like ε. You can change the language from input menu icon showing in top bar.
2.2. Using Characters Viewer App
- Open your document and go to “Edit > Emoji & Symbols” menu.
- Make sure Character Viewer app shows in enlarged view or click the symbol icon showing on top right corner to enlarge it.
- After that, click the customize icon showing on top left corner and select “Customize List…” option.
- On the pop-up that appears, expand “European Alphabetic Scripts” section and check “Greek” option. Click “Done” button to close the pop-up.
- Now, Greek section will be added in the Character Viewer’s sidebar and go to that section.
- Find the letter that you want to insert and select the font variation if needed.
- Finally, double click on the letter to insert in your document.
2.3. Equation Editor in Office for Mac
- Open one of the Office apps for Mac like Word or Excel.
- Go to “Insert” menu and click on the “Equation” icon in ribbon.
- Click the small arrow in symbols section to expand it.
- You will find “Lowercase” and “Uppercase” sections showing all Greek alphabets.
- Click the letter to insert as an equation in your document.
3. Inserting Greek Alphabets in HTML Webpage
It is also easy to use Greek alphabets in the source HTML code using one of the following methods.
3.1. Using Entity Name in HTML
All the Greek alphabets are having HTML entity names as given in the last column of the above table. You can simply use these HTML entity names in your source code inside a paragraph or span tag.
<span>This is a Greek capital Omicron letter - Ο</span>
This will produce the output as This is a Greek capital Omicron letter – Ο.
3.2. Using Escape Strings
Instead of HTML entity names, you can also use decimal and hexadecimal codes in the forms of escape strings in HTML. Make sure to use them in the below format with span or paragraph tag.
When you frequently want to insert Greek alphabets, it is difficult to remember all these decimal or hexadecimal codes. Here is a printable image which you can download and print for offline reference. Otherwise, download the PDF file with complete list of shortcut codes for Greek alphabets.