Is there a keyboard shortcut (or a Greasemonkey script that adds this keyboard shortcut), to make a certain paragraph right-to-left, or left-to-right in gmail?

This question in the official gmail forums has no answer.

  • @phwd understanding this question requires knowledge in RTL usage of the computer, there's a link to a similar question in the official gmail forums, it was viewed 1K times, so people who speak RTL languages probably. How else can I clarify it? Jul 9, 2012 at 12:46
  • +1 for "This question in the official gmail forums has no answer" Aug 20, 2012 at 7:16
  • were ctrl+shift+x for me in firefox!
    – n611x007
    Dec 18, 2012 at 20:25
  • 1
    Anyone knows the answer for Google Inbox? Should I open a new question?
    – haggai_e
    Sep 6, 2016 at 6:01
  • @haggai_e - there's an open issue about the same RTL problem in INBOX: productforums.google.com/forum/#!topic/inbox/ZEOL3Qt50bI and the best solution was downgrading :( . My solution was to move back to gmail...
    – Noam Manos
    Nov 28, 2016 at 4:56

4 Answers 4


Found it!

RTL: Ctrl + Shift + R

LTR: Ctrl + Shift + L

(I'm on Ubuntu and Chrome)

  • 1
    Doesn't work for me in Mac, and now gmail deduce directionality by the first letter in the paragraph, so shape isn't so bad. Jan 13, 2013 at 15:33
  • Yup, the auto directionality is a nice, but still have some bugs occasionally. I'm On Ubuntu and Chrome, maybe it's specific to this setup.
    – Eyal Levin
    Jan 14, 2013 at 10:25

RCtrl+RShift (as in, the shift and control keys on the right side of the keyboard). Works for me in Chrome and all other Windows apps. In Firefox it's Ctrl+Alt+X.

This is for RTL typing, not for right justified text (similar but different).

This the most complete, pedantic answer possible:

To have some paragraphs LTR and some RTL, you need to have rich formatting enabled. If you don't have rich formatting enabled, the change is temporary and will not be seen on the receiving end of the email. There is no way to send RTL text without enabling rich-formatting because plain text emails don't support the RTL HTML tags.

Clicking the "Right to Left" button on the rich-formatting toolbar has the same effect as typing RCtrl+RShift while rich-formatting is enabled. Typing RCtrl+RShift without rich formatting has only a local effect, unseen at the receiver, and applies to the entire text, not just the current paragraph.

  • I should've emphasized that, but I wrote in gmail. Fixed now. Oct 10, 2010 at 19:06
  • @Elazar, works for me using Chrome in GMail. I don't think the solution will be limited to GMail. Have you tried it? Oct 10, 2010 at 23:23
  • @rchem, I did, it didn't work for me in Chrome. Did you use rich text editor? Do you have BiDi enabled? Did it really changed the direction of the paragraph, or just aligned it to the right? Try to write "א a", the hebrew letter should be the rightmost one. Oct 11, 2010 at 15:24
  • @Eyal please edit your answer so that I can remove the downvote. If it worked for someone, I don't want to keep to downvote an answer that worked for someone. Oct 11, 2010 at 15:25
  • @Elazar - downvoting every single answer which does not help you is not proper etiquette. If an answer is not helpful, leave it as it. If an answer is really out of line, then downvote it.
    – Yuval A
    Nov 2, 2010 at 22:18

In Windows 7, on the Google Chrome titlebar, I use RCtrl+RShift to change to RTL. Somewhat intuitively, LCtrl+LShift changes back to LTR. I find myself accidentally setting to RTL when I'm trying to select (with RShift+RCtrl+Arrow).

  • I want to change directionality in the actual paragraph, not just the visual directionality in a textbox. Apr 10, 2013 at 20:11
  • @ElazarLeibovich You're probably going to have to be specific about which software you're using! Apr 11, 2013 at 0:23

using Ctrl + g should do it

  • This doesn't work - it brings up the quick search panel in Firefox and in Chrome.
    – Kobi
    Aug 25, 2010 at 10:38

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