Typing accented characters on Windows and Mac

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Portuguese has the following 13 accented characters:

 ç   á é í ó ú    à    ã õ   â ê ô    ü


If you google the topic of typing accented characters, you'll find an overwhelming number of options on how to type these:

  • using numeric codes that are impossible to remember
  • special software that you need to install
  • modes that you can enable on certain keyboards
  • utilities from which you can copy & paste a symbol
  • shortcuts that work in some programs like Microsoft Word but not in others


For the person who needs to type the occasional Portuguese, I found that the simplest procedure is below.

It is easy to remember, doesn't require any software to be installed, and works across the board whether you're using Word, an email program, or something else.


Create Portuguese accents under Windows

On Windows, type this To create this
Control + , [comma], then c ç Ç
Control + ' [apostrophe], then any vowel á é í ó ú Á É Í Ó Ú
Control + ` [grave accent], then any vowel à À
Control + Shift + ~ [tilde], then any vowel ã õ Ã Õ
Control + Shift + ^ [circumflex], then any vowel â ê ô Â Ê Ô
Control + Shift + : [colon], then any vowel ü Ü


Create Portuguese accents on the Apple Mac

On the Mac, type this To create this
Option + c ç Ç
Option + e, then any vowel á é í ó ú Á É Í Ó Ú
Option + ` [grave accent], then any vowel à À
Option + n, then any vowel ã õ Ã Õ
Option + i, then any vowel â ê ô Â Ê Ô
Option + u, then any vowel ü Ü


An interesting tidbit: Officially the Portuguese alphabet doesn't have k, w, and y, but everyone knows these letters and uses them because of borrowed words from English.


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