Below's a SSCCE

I have a dead simple org-mode document and I hit C-c C-e to access the export dispatcher. Sure enough I can see the options and am prompted with the message Export buffer:

enter image description here

After hitting h (for "export as HTML") I see the below message in my Emacs:

Symbol's value as variable is void: f

.. as shown below:

enter image description here

The debug trace is:

enter image description here

Same debug trace as plain text:

Debugger entered--Lisp error: (void-variable f)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  
(setq org-hide-emphasis-markers f)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
run-hooks(change-major-mode-after-body-hook text-mode-hook outline-mode-hook org-mode-hook)                                                                                                                                                                                    
apply(run-hooks (change-major-mode-after-body-hook text-mode-hook outline-mode-hook org-mode-hook))                                                                                                                                                                            
org-export-preprocess-string(#("* heading 1\n  blah blah blah ...\n*   heading 2\n  blah blah blah ...\n" 0 2 (fontified t face org-level-1) 2 11 (fontified t face org-level-1) 11 33 (fontified t) 33 35 (fontified t face org-level-1) 35 44 (fontified t face org-level-1) 4$
call-interactively(org-export nil nil)     

My org-version is:

Org-mode version 7.9.3f (release_7.9.3f-17-g7524ef @ /usr/share/emacs/24.3/lisp/org/)

And my emacs-version:

GNU Emacs 24.3.1 (x86_64-pc-linux-gnu, GTK+ Version 3.10.7) of 2014-03-07 on lamiak, modified by Debian
  • 1
    Try M-x toggle-debug-on-error and run the export again to get the stack trace. Post the details here: it will help identify the function which caused the error.
    – wvxvw
    Commented Sep 30, 2015 at 17:34
  • @wvxvw updated question with trace. Commented Sep 30, 2015 at 19:37
  • Off hand, (and from errors I've encountered before) I'd guess something in one of the collapsed headings is causing the problem. If it's just the headings does the error persist?
    – user2699
    Commented Sep 30, 2015 at 20:35
  • @user2699 the headings aren't collapsed, the ... at the end of blah blah blah really exist. At any rate I get the exact same message (and trace) with an empty org-mode file as well. Commented Sep 30, 2015 at 20:48
  • 1
    Search for (defun my-org-mode-hook in your init file. There is some problem with that function. Most likely it has code like (let ((f ...)) ...), try to figure out what that f was supposed to be.
    – wvxvw
    Commented Sep 30, 2015 at 21:04

1 Answer 1


Use nil to fix error:

(setq org-hide-emphasis-markers nil)

nil or empty list are interpreted as false. Any other value is true.

More details on symbols:

If you have never given a symbol any value as a global variable, we say that that symbol's global value is void. In other words, the symbol's value cell does not have any Lisp object in it. If you try to evaluate the symbol, you get a void-variable error rather than a value.

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