# Format

You can choose among various options for formatting a LibreOffice Math formula. The format options are displayed in the lower half of the Formula Elements pane. These options are also listed in the context menu of the **Commands** window.

Open the context menu in the Commands window - choose **Formats**

Choose **View - Elements**; then on the Elements pane select **Formats** from the listbox.

The following is a complete list of all available formatting options in LibreOffice Math. The icon next to the formatting option indicates that it can be accessed through the Elements pane (menu **View - Elements**) or through the context menu of the **Commands** window.

The letter "a" refers to the placeholder in your formula which you would like to assign to the respective formatting. You can substitute this character for any other you like. |

### Formatting options

Superscript left
Inserts a superscript to the left of a placeholder. You can also type |
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Superscript top
Inserts a superscript directly above a placeholder. You can also type |
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Superscript right
Inserts a superscript to the right of a placeholder. You can also type |
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Vertical stack (2 elements)
Inserts a vertical stack (binomial) with two placeholders. You can also type |
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New line
Inserts a new line in your document. You can also type |
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Subscript left
Inserts a subscript to the left of a placeholder. You can also type |
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Subscript bottom
Inserts a subscript directly under a placeholder. You can also type |
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Subscript right
Inserts a subscript to the right of a placeholder. You can also type |
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Vertical stack (3 elements)
Inserts a vertical stack with three placeholders. You can also type |
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Small gap
Inserts a small gap between a placeholder and the next element. You can also type |
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Align left
This icon assigns left-alignment to "a" and inserts a placeholder. You can type |
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Align to horizontal center
Assigns horizontal central alignment to "a" and inserts a placeholder. You can also type |
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Align right
Inserts the command for right alignment and a placeholder. You can also type |
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Matrix stack
This icon inserts a matrix with four placeholders. You can also type |
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Gap
This icon inserts a gap or space between placeholders. You can also type |
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For alignment, the **alignl, alignc** and **alignr** commands are especially effective, if you are

- aligning numerators and denominators, for example
**{alignl a}over{b+c}** - constructing binomials or stacks, for example
**binom{2*n}{alignr k}** - aligning the elements in a matrix, for example
**matrix{alignr a#b+2##c+1/3#alignl d}**and - beginning a new line, for example
**a+b-c newline alignr x/y**

When using the align instructions, note that

- they can only placed at the beginning of expressions and can only occur once. Therefore you can type
**a+b alignr c**, but not**a+alignr b** - they affect each other, which means that typing
**{alignl{alignr a}}over{b+c}**aligns**a**on the right.

### To align using the "matrix" command

`matrix{`

`alignr sin^2 x + cos^2 x#{}={}#alignl 1 ##`

`alignr cos^2 x #{}={} #alignl 1 - sin^2 x`

`}`

### Aligning to the left

If a line or an expression begins with text, it is aligned on the left by default. You can change this with any of the **align** commands. An example is **stack{a+b-c*d#alignr "text"}**, where "text" appears aligned to the right. Note that text must always be surrounded by quotation marks.

The standard centralized formulas can be aligned to the left without using the **Format - Alignment** menu. To do this, place an empty character string, that is, the inverted commas which surround any text "", before the section of formula that you want to align. For example, typing **"" a+b newline "" c+d** results in both equations being left-aligned instead of centered.

Click Brackets and Grouping for more information about formatting in **LibreOffice Math**.

Useful information about Indexes and Exponents and Scaling, helps you organize your document in the best possible way.