How to escape braces (curly brackets) in a format string in .NET – Dev

The best answers to the question “How to escape braces (curly brackets) in a format string in .NET” in the category Dev.

QUESTION:

How can brackets be escaped in using string.Format?

For example:

String val = "1,2,3"
String.Format(" foo {{0}}", val);

This example doesn’t throw an exception, but it outputs the string foo {0}.

Is there a way to escape the brackets?

ANSWER:

Yes, to output { in string.Format you have to escape it like this: {{

So the following will output "foo {1,2,3}".

String val = "1,2,3";
String.Format(" foo {{{0}}}", val);

But you have to know about a design bug in C# which is that by going on the above logic you would assume this below code will print {24.00}:

int i = 24;
string str = String.Format("{{{0:N}}}", i); // Gives '{N}' instead of {24.00}

But this prints {N}. This is because the way C# parses escape sequences and format characters. To get the desired value in the above case, you have to use this instead:

String.Format("{0}{1:N}{2}", "{", i, "}") // Evaluates to {24.00}

Reference Articles

  • String.Format gotcha
  • String Formatting FAQ

ANSWER:

For you to output foo {1, 2, 3} you have to do something like:

string t = "1, 2, 3";
string v = String.Format(" foo {{{0}}}", t);

To output a { you use {{ and to output a } you use }}.

Or now, you can also use C# string interpolation like this (a feature available in C# 6.0)

Escaping brackets: String interpolation $(“”). It is new feature in C# 6.0.

var inVal = "1, 2, 3";
var outVal = $" foo {{{inVal}}}";
// The output will be:  foo {1, 2, 3}

ANSWER:

You can use double open brackets and double closing brackets which will only show one bracket on your page.

ANSWER:

Almost there! The escape sequence for a brace is {{ or }} so for your example you would use:

string t = "1, 2, 3";
string v = String.Format(" foo {{{0}}}", t);