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When typing some text in LibreOffice Writer, one can use following in-line shortcuts:

  • type *text* to write the word "text" in bold,
  • type _text_ to write the word "text" underlined.

What is the corresponding in-line shortcut for writing the word "text" in italics?

  • Which version of LibreOffice is this? I don't see what you see. Perhaps there's a setting somewhere that I don't know about. Could you enlighten me? – DK Bose Mar 27 '17 at 16:59
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    I've never seen that. And now I'm on 5.2 and it certainly isn't the default which is why I'm asking whether there's some setting that enables you to do what you describe. – DK Bose Mar 27 '17 at 17:05
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    @DKBose Weird indeed. I'm using the bold-feature for a long time now, but I do not remember if I changed some settings to enable it, or not... | Edit: you might want to read How do I stop OpenOffice.org from formatting text between asterisks in bold?, even if it's not LibreOffice. – ebosi Mar 27 '17 at 17:10
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    Thanks, I got bold and underline to work. I had to tick Autocorrect > While typing. I'm quite comfortable using Ctrl+B, Ctrl+U, and Ctrl+I so I'll stick with that. – DK Bose Mar 27 '17 at 17:32
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    The shortcut for italic is now available in LibreOffice 5.4. For details, see my updated answer at below. – clearkimura Feb 3 '18 at 10:14
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There was none, but there is a shortcut for italic now.

To use the shortcut, user must have installed at least LibreOffice 5.4. The addition of markup italic and strikethrough is noted in LibreOffice 5.4 release note.

  • Type *bold* to make strong text i.e. bold
  • Type /italic/ to emphasize text i.e. italic
  • Type -strikethrough- to strike text i.e. strikethrough
  • Type _underline_ to underline text (not shown here due to limitation on SE)

Where to check

The shortcuts are handled by AutoCorrect in LibreOffice and AutoCorrect in OpenOffice. To see the option, go to Tools > AutoCorrect > AutoCorrect Options and select "Options" tab.

AutoCorrect has now improved options for bold, italic, strikethrough and underline. In LibreOffice 5.3 and older, the options were limited to bold and underline (bottom half).

AutoCorrect options in LibreOffice 5.4 and 5.3

The following limitation applies:

  • User can only enable or disable the shortcuts all together or none, but not individually.
  • User can not change the existing in-line shortcuts to something else.

What about MediaWiki syntax

Some users may think of text formatting markup by MediaWiki. LibreOffice does have an extension for MediaWiki, which is available in the repository or the local repository.

$ apt-cache search libreoffice wiki
libreoffice-wiki-publisher - LibreOffice extension for working with MediaWiki articles
libobasis5.3-extension-mediawiki-publisher - MediaWiki publisher extension for LibreOffice 5.3 .0.3

Unfortunately, MediaWiki extension is for publishing purpose.

The indended use is to export styles and formatting in LibreOffice to MediaWiki format and not the other way round. So users who expect ''italic'' to become italic or '''bold''' to become bold would be not possible in LibreOffice.

Using keyboard shortcut

Alternatively, LibreOffice Help explains that applying text formatting while you type for italic is possible using the keyboard shortcut.

To apply italic formatting

  1. Select the text that you want to format.

  2. Press Ctrl+I. You can also press Ctrl+I, type the text that you want to format in italic, and then press Ctrl+I when you are finished.

Tested using LibreOffice 5.3 and LibreOffice 5.4 in Xubuntu 14.04.

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    Those keyboard shortcuts are almost universal. Mozilla Thunderbird, OpenOffice, Microsoft Office, Outlook (the web-based client and the installed program) use that shortcut too – Ismael Miguel Mar 28 '17 at 9:27
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To the best of my knowledge there is no "in-line" shortcut in LibreOffice Writer for italics (if by in-line you mean the keystrokes appear before the style is converted. You can however toggle italics on and off with the CtrlI key combination. So for instance you can type CtrlI t e s t CtrlI to obtain test

Source: https://help.libreoffice.org/Common/General_Shortcut_Keys_in

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    Thank you. This is indeed better than using the mouse. However, hitting Ctrl twice is a waste of time I cannot afford! I'm indeed looking for the in-line (or "markdown-like") shortcut (or a way to customize predefined ones: I would love to trade _underline_ for _italic_!) – ebosi Mar 27 '17 at 16:56
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    @ebo I fail to understand how CTRL-I is more difficult than Shift-8 or Shift - Be that as it may, Since I've already answered the question you asked and I believe it has value to future readers, I'm rolling back your edit. If you have a completely new question regarding changing the shortcut keys for Libre Office Writer feel free to ask. Thank you for your understanding. :-) – Elder Geek Mar 27 '17 at 17:27
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    My keyboard configuration makes me need to hit only one key to get _ or * (-; | I might indeed ask a follow-up question. But could you please refer to the link I used in my edit; it may be more accurate for answering the question. – ebosi Mar 27 '17 at 17:40
  • @ebo Simply reference askubuntu.com/posts/897464/revisions and askubuntu.com/questions/897464/… in your new question if you feel it will add something. – Elder Geek Mar 27 '17 at 17:43

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