# How to change LaTeX's "fixed names"

• latex
• macros

LaTeX document classes define several typographic operations that need “canned text” (text not supplied by the user). In the earliest days of LaTeX 2.09 these bits of text were built in to the body of LaTeX's macros and were rather difficult to change, but “fixed name” macros were introduced for the benefit of those wishing to use LaTeX in languages other than English. For example, the special section produced by the `\tableofcontents` command is always called `\contentsname` (or rather, what `\contentsname` is defined to mean). Changing the canned text is now one of the easiest customisations a user can do to LaTeX.

The canned text macros are all of the form `\<thing>name`, and changing them is simplicity itself. Put: `\renewcommand{\<thing>name}{Res minor}` in the preamble of your document, and the job is done. (However, beware of the babel package, which requires you to use a different mechanism: be sure to check changing `babel` names if you're using it.)

The names that are defined in the standard LaTeX classes (and the makeidx package) are listed below. Some of the names are only defined in a subset of the classes (and the letter class has a set of names all of its own); the list shows the specialisation of each name, where appropriate.

 Command Default definition —————- ———- `\abstractname` Abstract `\alsoname` see also (makeidx package) `\appendixname` Appendix `\bibname` Bibliography (report,book) `\ccname` cc (letter) `\chaptername` Chapter (report,book) `\contentsname` Contents `\enclname` encl (letter) `\figurename` Figure (for captions) `\headtoname` To (letter) `\indexname` Index `\listfigurename` List of Figures `\listtablename` List of Tables `\pagename` Page (letter) `\partname` Part `\refname` References (article) `\seename` see (makeidx package) `\tablename` Table (for caption)