Open main menu
See also: , ٭‎, , , , and
* U+002A, *
Basic Latin +
U+FE61, ﹡

Small Form Variants
U+FF0A, *

Halfwidth and Fullwidth Forms


English Wikipedia has an article on:



  1. (alchemy) Used as the symbol for sal ammoniac.
  2. (astronomy) A star.
  3. (computing)
    1. Used as a multiplication symbol.
    2. (regular expressions) Used as a wildcard to detect zero or more occurences of the preceding element.
      The string ab*c matches “ac”, “abc”, “abbc”, “abbbc”, and so on.
  4. (mathematics)
    1. (algebra) Complex or transpose conjugate; conjugate.
    2. (algebra, computer science) Free monoid or Kleene star.
      In the language defined by AB*A, each string starts with an A, ends with a distinct A, and between them has zero or more Bs.
    3. (linear algebra, functional analysis) Dual space.
  5. (particle physics) Used to designate a resonance.


  • (multiplication symbol): ×, x, ·


  • (multiplication symbol): :, /, ÷

Coordinate termsEdit

  • (multiplication symbol): +, -, /, %, ^, **

Derived termsEdit

  • * * (encloses text for emphasis)
  • (astronomy): V*, Cl*
  • (multiplication symbol): **

Punctuation markEdit


  1. Used to censor sections of obscene or profane words.
  2. Used in a dictionary or similar work to indicate a cross-reference to another entry.
    • 2014, The Oxford Dictionary of English Grammar (in English), 2nd edition, Oxford: Oxford University Press, →ISBN, page 25:
      analysis The process of breaking up *words, *phrases, *clauses, *sentences, *constructions, etc. into their *constituent parts.
  3. Used at the beginning of a footnote, especially if it is the only one on the page, and after a word, phrase, or sentence that this footnote relates to.
  4. Used to separate multiple gendered inflections in gender-neutral writing.
    Freund*innen; ein*e Beamt*er*in
    friends (of any gender); an officer (of any gender)
  5. (cricket) Used to marks a score or statistic that is incomplete, such as the score of a batsman who is (or was) not out.
  6. (computing) Uses in computing.
    1. Used as a wildcard to denote zero or more characters.
    2. (Internet) Used to indicate a field of a form that must be filled out.
    3. (Internet slang) Used before or after a word to show a correction has been made, chiefly by the same participant.
      I'm our of time. / *out
  7. (genealogy) Used before a date to denote that it is a birthdate.
  8. Uses in linguistics.
    1. (descriptive linguistics) Used before a term (such as a word, phrase, or sentence) to show that it is grammatically incorrect, or in some other way ill-formed.
      English prepositions come before the associated noun: we say She lives in Rome, not *She lives Rome in.
      Roots like **bep- were not allowed in Proto-Indo-European.
    2. (historical linguistics) Used before or after a term to denote that it is only hypothesized and not actually attested.
      1. When used before a term: that the term has been reconstructed by linguists, on the basis of comparative method or by comparing other reconstructed terms, as the plausible ancestor form of an existing, attested term in one or more languages.
        It is posited that Proto-Indo-European *sneygʷʰos is the etymon of both Latin nix and English snow.
        His theory of the Proto-Slavic *kъniga being ultimately derived from Chinese, via the middle form *kūinig, reflecting ancient routes of cultural influx from the East, has not gained a firm ground in the Slavicist circles in the last century.
      2. When used after a term: that the term is actually attested, but not in its citation form that is being mentioned.
        PIE *ḱonk- yielded Vedic śaṅk-ate “worries, hesitates”, as well as pre-Germanic *kank-, whence also Gothic hāhan* “to hang”.
      3. When used before a symbol representing a phoneme: that the phoneme is reconstructed on the basis of comparative method.
        Proto-Germanic had three unvoiced fricatives: */f/, */þ/, and */h/.
      4. When used before a symbol representing a sound value: that the sound value is hypothesized.
        Proto-Germanic had three unvoiced fricatives, possibly representing *[ɸ], *[θ], and *[x].
  9. Used to indicate emphasis, see * *.
  10. Used to form a dinkus, * * *, or asterism, .

Usage notesEdit

  • The English names of the mark are asterisk and star.
  • In Internet slang, when two or more corrections are made, one may add a * with each correction.
    I just got back from Sarcamento / *Sacarmento / **Sacramento


  • (in censoring): ,
  • (as wildcard): %
  • (genealogy): °


  • (genealogy): / / + (French)

Coordinate termsEdit

  • (beginning a footnote): , , **, [numbers]
  • (as wildcard): ?
  • (genealogy): / , , (German)
  • (grammatically incorrect): ?




  1. (text messaging) Used to correct a previous typo
    Hpw are you?, How* — I meant to type How.
  2. (text messaging) star
    ur a *! — You're a star!
  3. (text messaging) used to replace the sounds /stɑː(ɹ)/ (star) in any word that has this pronunciation or similar
    e.g. *t (start), *fish (starfish), *g8 (stargate)