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Doubts about a typo fix

From: Alejandro Colomar
Subject: Doubts about a typo fix
Date: Wed, 23 Nov 2022 20:31:22 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:102.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/102.4.1

Hi Paul,

I don't undertstand the commit shown below. It breaks the '-' symbol, which now is a hyphen. See the table mentioned yesterday:

         │Keycap   Appearance and meaning   Special character and meaning   │
         │"        " neutral double quote   \[dq] neutral double quote      │
         │'        ’ closing single quote   \[aq] neutral apostrophe        │
         │-        ‐ hyphen                 \- or \[-] minus sign/Unix dash │
         │\        (escape character)       \e or \[rs] reverse solidus     │
         │^        ˆ modifier circumflex    \(ha circumflex/caret/“hat”     │
         │`        ‘ opening single quote   \(ga grave accent               │
         │~        ˜ modifier tilde         \(ti tilde                      │

So, at least, it should be (but I believe the initial code was correct):

.q "zic \*\-r @$(date +%s)"

However, I wonder what that \* is intending to do there (I can see no difference in my screen with or without it).




commit 918e10e8963b3c0d38d3b5fb8ec9cf08ecd03757
Author: Paul Eggert <>
Date:   Tue Jul 12 06:26:53 2022 -0700

    * zic.8: fix minus typo

diff --git a/zic.8 b/zic.8
index 0cd0781e..e8816e5b 100644
--- a/zic.8
+++ b/zic.8
@@ -145,7 +145,7 @@ .SH OPTIONS
 31-bit signed integers.
 On platforms with GNU
 .BR date ,
-.q "zic \-r @$(date +%s)"
+.q "zic \*-r @$(date +%s)"
 omits data intended for past timestamps.
 Although this option typically reduces the output file's size,
 the size can increase due to the need to represent the timestamp range


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