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How to search the internet for terms with special characters

I have been trying to do a literal search in Google for text exactly like:


I have tried all sorts of ways like adding '+' prefix, including it in quotes, using allintext etc. without success.

Anyone know how to do this?


2 Answers 2


It's not possible. Special characters can not be used to search on in Google. I find this to be the case with other search engines as well (as expected), like Bing, Yahoo! and DuckDuckGo.

The documentation for Google Search states:

Generally, most punctuation and special characters are ignored in Google Search.

A list of special characters that are supported can be found on the same page I linked above.

  • Oops, I was hoping for not this, Isn't there any workaround/hacks?
    – Chibueze Opata
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 11:56
  • It would surprise me, as Google most likely needs to use those special characters 'behind the scenes' in the matching algorithm.
    – pleinolijf
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 11:57
  • The quote you show talks about Gmail though, not Google Search in specific...?
    – Chibueze Opata
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 12:26
  • Good point, although the search function will be similar. I'll update my answer.
    – pleinolijf
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 12:29

This search engine seems to solve the kind of problem you're having: http://symbolhound.com/

  • Great, but it seems the search coverage is quite low...
    – Chibueze Opata
    Commented Sep 20, 2012 at 12:27

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