:1 jumps to the first line, :$ jumps to the last line, :+ jumps to the next line, etc.

It seems to me that there is a default ex command which accepts a range and jumps to it: what's the name of this ex command?

Where can I find it in vim help? I guessed it might be in various.txt, but I can't find it.

  • It's unclear what you want from your question. Maybe add an example of what the command would do. Just assume the command is command_name and add in the question how you would invoke the command and what it would output.
    – 3N4N
    May 2, 2019 at 14:57
  • There are already 3 examples, I don't have problem calling this commands, but I don't know the name of this command, and I want to know it.
    – dedowsdi
    May 2, 2019 at 15:02
  • Oh, I misunderstood then. I guess you want to look at :h cmdline-ranges. But that is obvious from how the ex-commands are acting that these are just ranges.
    – 3N4N
    May 2, 2019 at 15:05
  • It doesn't describe command line with only range.
    – dedowsdi
    May 2, 2019 at 15:09
  • Sorry, I am really unable to understand your question. Sorry for not being able to help.
    – 3N4N
    May 2, 2019 at 15:11

1 Answer 1


This command has no name, but is simply the default behavior of the ex (and, notably, ed). Given a range, which may be one of the special sequences you mentioned, or a search, or even just a plain line number (e.g., :42), ex will jump to that spot in the file.

It does, however, have a place in the doc:

:help :[range]

As requested, an in-depth look at my help-searching process:

  • man ex: Always a good start. This took me to the vim man-page, which more or less points to the online help
  • man ed: Remembering that ex descends from ed, I thought I'd try here. I'm not sure if the behavior is documented there, but it was worth a shot
  • :help ex led to :help Ex-mode, neither of which were helpful
  • Remembering something about viusage and exusage, I tried :help exusage: an interesting command to run
  • I didn't see a range-based command in the index... hm. What about :help range? Took me to a useful page, but not quite there
  • Ok, commands taking ranges are documented like :[range]command, so maybe :help [range]: Not quite, that's just above where we were
  • :help :[range]: at long last.

(This is slightly exaggerated: in reality, post-exusage I jumped straight to :help :[range] because that's the syntax of the command. It was a lucky guess.)

  • It tickles me to not be able to find such a basic thing in vim help. I shall accept it as the answer if no one objects for some time.
    – dedowsdi
    May 2, 2019 at 15:21
  • @dedowsdi me too. Ive cleaned up your question a bit and am about to go try finding it myself.
    – D. Ben Knoble
    May 2, 2019 at 15:22
  • @dedowsdi see update
    – D. Ben Knoble
    May 2, 2019 at 15:26
  • 1
    @dedowsdi Uh, luck? Good guessing? Actually, I started with help exusage, and then that led me to a part of the index where i couldnt find it. So i thought well maybe ill try the range help (and I knew the syntax for the help doc bc it’s pretty standardized).
    – D. Ben Knoble
    May 2, 2019 at 16:16
  • 1
    @dedowsdi see update
    – D. Ben Knoble
    May 3, 2019 at 1:07

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