Running spacemacs 0.200.

I am sorry if it is too basic. But I am just not able to get this.

How do I convert two consecutive newlines with some text, say, 'there were two newlines here'?

I could see the notation for special character classes like [[:alnum:]], etc. But no clue about newlines.

  • Your question is not clear to me. Do you want to replace all occurrences of <br><br> with some text?
    – StarBug
    Jun 10, 2019 at 14:06
  • @StarBug No. I want to replace two consecutive newlines with the text '<br><br>'. Anyway, I have edited the question to make it more clear.
    – deshmukh
    Jun 10, 2019 at 15:28
  • 1
    Interactively, you can use replace-regexp for this. Just type C-q C-j to indicate a newline in the REGEXP.
    – StarBug
    Jun 10, 2019 at 15:53
  • @StarBug: Please post that comment as an answer.
    – Drew
    Jun 10, 2019 at 16:23
  • Related: emacs.stackexchange.com/q/9548
    – phils
    Jun 11, 2019 at 22:44

1 Answer 1


Interactively, you can use replace-regexp for this. Type C-q C-j to insert a newline character in the minibuffer (so you would need to type this twice).

In Elisp strings you can use \n to indicate a newline, so you would write (re-search-forward "\n\n") to search for two consecutive newlines. You can then use a replace-match command for the replacement.

  • 2
    The same should work with query-replace instead of replace-regexp. Jun 10, 2019 at 17:56
  • Why doesn't C-q RET work?
    – mcp
    Sep 22, 2020 at 17:54

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