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Strings are sequences of characters, letters, numbers, letters AND numbers, symbols, and so forth. They are declared in quotes.

A script of

local x = "Hi mom"
local y = "123456"
local z = "Bob12345"
local n = "abc!@#$%^&*()123456789"


will print in the output bar

Hi mom

Strings differ from Numbers in that you can't allocate a name like "Bob" to numbers.

Another important note with strings is that if you try to perform arithmetic on a string value, it will try to convert the string to a number. If your value can't be converted to a number, you will get an error.


print("5"+1) --> 6

print("whoops"+1) --> Cmd:1: attempt to perform arithmetic on a string value

In the first example, "5" was converted from a string to a number (notice "5" was in quotes, but 1 was not.) In the second example "whoops" could not be converted to a number, because it was a word.

Although lua will convert strings with arithmetic (+, -, *, /), it won't automatically convert strings with comparisons. You have to convert a string to a number manually (or a number to a string) using the tonumber() or tostring() function:

print("50" == 50)             -- false, because a string is not equal to a number.

print(tostring(50) == "50")   -- true, because you converted the number 50 to a string

print(tonumber("50") == 50)   -- true, because you converted the string "50" to a number

print(50 .. "" == "50")       -- true, because you tacked on an empty string to the end of the number 50, converting 50 to a string.


This will also work with hexadecimal numbers:

print(0xf == 15)               -- true, because 0xf is a hexadecimal number which equals 15
print(tonumber("0xf") == 15)   -- true, because you converted the string "0xf" to a number, 0xf

as well as with other based numbers, but you have to specify the base:

print(tonumber("00001111", 2))       -- prints 15
print(tonumber("00001111", 2) == 15) -- prints true

print(tonumber("774", 8))            -- prints 508
print(tonumber("774", 8) == 508)     -- prints true


print "hello"
print 'hello'
print [[hello]]
print ("hello")

Will all result in: hello

This will allow you to nest a string within another string:

print('hello "Lua user"')
print("Its [[content]] hasn't got a substring.")
print([[Let's have more "strings" please.]])

Will result in:

hello "Lua user"
Its [[content]] hasn't got a substring.
Let's have more "strings" please.

Multiline quotes

print([[Multiple lines of text
can be enclosed in double square

Will result in: Multiple lines of text can be enclosed in double square brackets.

An example could be:

local m ="Message") 
m.Parent = workspace
m.Text = [[Multiple lines of text 
can be enclosed 
in double square brackets.]]

Nesting quotes

Nested quotes rely on the use of equals signs to distinguish one nested quote from another.


print([=[one [[two]] one]=])
print([===[one [[two]] one]===])

Both result in:
[one [[two]] one]

See Also

Programming in Lua 2.4 -- Strings

Lua 5.1 Reference Manual