The quick help of Unity (long press on the Super button) shows that Switch windows of current application can be triggered by Alt+Grave keyboard shortcut. What is Grave?

Here it is:
enter image description here

  • 1
    I don't think I've ever heard it referred to as just grave. The term grave accent is more common, and can be considered the opposite of acute accent. Both are related to the terms grave and acute in linguistics.
    – ændrük
    Mar 20, 2012 at 19:22
  • 1
    @ændrük I took this term from the help screen of 12.04. See the screenshot that I added.
    – yossile
    Mar 20, 2012 at 20:11
  • Does anybody know how this button is called in german? Mar 22, 2012 at 18:31
  • 1
    @ moose: The "grave accent" can be translated as "Gravis Akzent/Betonung or Akzent Grave", though Germans (mainly) refer to it as "grave", since it is an adopted anglicism, and therefore one of many verbalized accepted/integrated words. Also it might have a slightly different phonetical touch to it (:
    – v2r
    Mar 24, 2012 at 17:56

4 Answers 4


This is usually the button immediately above the TAB on most keyboards.

For my keyboard - grave is actually correctly known as the ` key - grave is also known as the back-tick.

In my travels I have seen the Ubuntu "key above the tab" to actually be the § or º. I'm sure there are many other similar characters on peoples keyboards.

Depending on your locality if you press and hold the SUPER to display the overlay, you should see the equivalent Grave key for your locality

for example:

enter image description here

(thanks Javier Rivera)

For my keyboard combination - ALT+` - gives you this switching capability (cycle through the windows group):

enter image description here

To use this key combination - let go of the grave without letting go of Alt and then repress grave to cycle through the windows group.

  • 6
    To be a bit more pedantic, "grave" is another name for backtick (i.e. the ` character); it has nothing to do with the placement on the keyboard and everything to do with it being superficially-similar to a grave accent.
    – fluffy
    Mar 20, 2012 at 23:28
  • But (I have heard) Unity does actually use "whatever key is above tab" on the current keyboard layout. If backtick isn't there, it won't be the shortcut.
    – poolie
    Mar 21, 2012 at 3:39
  • 4
    Confimed, there is a º in my keyboard above tab and it works. Mar 21, 2012 at 14:09
  • 1
    @JavierRivera - thanks for the feedback - I've updated the answer with this.
    – fossfreedom
    Mar 21, 2012 at 14:58

Additional information:
List of most common Accents and Diacritical marks

acute       ´  
breve       ˘  
caron       ˇ  
cedilla     ¸  
circumflex  ^  
dieresis    ¨  
grave       `  
macron      ¯  
ogonek      ˛  
tilde       ˜  


tilde | ˈtildə | noun
an accent ˜ placed over Spanish n when pronounced ny (as in señor) or Portuguese a or o when nasalized (as in São Paulo), or over a vowel in phonetic transcription, indicating nasalization.

  • the same symbol as a part of a URL.
  • a similar symbol used in mathematics to indicate similarity, and in logic to indicate negation.

ORIGIN mid 19th cent.: from Spanish, based on Latin titulus.


macron | ˈmāˌkrän; **ˈmak-; ˈmākrən | noun
a written or printed mark ¯ used to indicate a long vowel in some languages and phonetic transcription systems, or a stressed vowel in verse.

ORIGIN mid 19th cent.: from Greek makron, neuter of makros ‘long.’

Source: source

Good question yossile (+1)up.
First of all, both differentiate in visual appearance ¯ vs. ˜. Secondly, they are not exactly the same, depending on the language they where adopted by as shown in the dictionary example above, though both share a lot of similarities in executed usage, due to there common origin.

To my knowledge, the dictionary quote above is "not accurate/adequate", since one can find ˜ in archaic Greek philology (Heraclitus - Logos, Empedocles, Parmenides etc..) as well. Although the Greeks adopted it from the Phoenicians Alphabet, which our language system today mainly is build on (Alphabet/Letters).

  • 2
    macron and tilde are the same. Is it true?
    – yossile
    Mar 23, 2012 at 9:00
  • The reason I asked it is because in 12.04 I see the same visual character for both macron and tilde (actually tilde doesn't appear right). In 11.10 tilde looks like it should. Weird
    – yossile
    Mar 24, 2012 at 17:13
  • Curious indeed. I still run 11.10, so i can not confirm if both are the same only for you, me/everyone else too, though it would be interesting to know of course. (Can someone else please confirm this!?) Right now i have three possible answers why this might be, but they are all hypothetical without more information, therefore not relevant. As long as both don't corrupt each other in usage it "hopefully" is only a minor cosmetic issue.
    – v2r
    Mar 24, 2012 at 17:27

"Grave" button is `, just next to 1.

Grave button


On German keyboard it's the Ö button.

  • 3
    Are you sure? It's supposed to be the key above Tab. According to Wikipedia, that is not Ö. Apr 16, 2014 at 19:38
  • Answer is not generic enough. It applies to a very small group of people regardless if it's true for said group.
    – C_B
    Apr 3, 2015 at 8:48
  • -1 I use(d) a German keyboard and the default German keyboard layout and I can confirm, that this is not the case. The location of the keys for the shortcut mentioned in the question is the same as on US keyboards, but the key is labelled with a circumflex (^). Aug 15, 2015 at 12:24
  • To close flaggers/voters: even though this answer seems completely wrong, it still attempts to address the question at hand. As such, it's a permissible answer per our rules. If you disagree with its content, vote it down and/or leave a comment. Aug 15, 2015 at 12:33

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