How to add a newline character when using echo command on Linux

This short guide shows you how to add a newline into a file by using the echo command on the Linux shell.

Add a Newline Character using echo command in Bash

In this example, I'll assume that we have a file example.txt with the following content:

Line 1
Line 2

Now we want to use the echo command, either on the command-line or in a bash script, to add this line:

Line 3

in a separate line at the end of the file. The command to do this is:

echo $'\nLine 3' >> example.txt

The Result is:

Line 1
Line 2
Line 3

So how does it work?

The "\n" stands for the newline character. The $ in front of the quotes instructs Bash to expand the ANSI sequences inside the string. The >> then appends the output of the echo command to the file. And what if we would want to write our example file consisting of 3 lines with a single echo command? The command would be:

echo $'Line1\nLine2\nLine3' > example.txt

 

Leave a Comment

*