# [XeTeX] Fake italics for some characters only

Arthur Reutenauer arthur.reutenauer at normalesup.org
Wed Dec 5 23:12:18 CET 2018

On Wed, Dec 05, 2018 at 04:06:12PM +0000, John Was wrote:
>                                                      But the braces are
> certainly needed in *usage*:  \overstrike{b}{p}

The braces are not needed in this example.  Just try

\overstrike b p

or even

\overstrike bp

>               But if you wanted a simple macro, say one that reversed two
> arguments, you could have e.g.
>
> \def\swap#1#2{#2#1}
>
> with no extra braces aside from those needed to open and close the
> definition.  You would still need them in *usage*, of course.

Not necessarily.  See for example

\swap12

or

\swap A\TeX

You seem to have developed an intuitive understanding of how TeX
interprets macro definitions and invocations, which can work in many
situations, but that’s not the right explanation.

> But we're rather far from the original question by now!