I want to use Vim (MacVim) to remove all single quotes from a file. I tried the following:



but in both cases, Vim returns:

E486: Pattern not found:

I get the same error when I simply try to search for single quotes:


What am I doing wrong?

  • 2
    Maybe the character is not actually a ' but something that looks like it? You can check with the ga command (should print 39). Nov 24, 2022 at 1:22

1 Answer 1


Together with @Martin I believe your file doesn't contain single quote but something that looks like single quote.

To look for it you could either

  • Copy the single character yl and search for it: /Ctrl-r"Enter

  • Discover it's code using the ga command an search for it: /Ctrl-vu2019Enter

Assuming 2019 is the Unicode code of your looklike quote.

The character u2019 is actually very similar to single quote u0027.


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