# Are line breaks and lists supposed to work in comments?

Are line breaks and lists supposed to work in comments? If not, how was I supposed to write the following answer to my own question?

"I have found two references. Indulal, G. (2007). Studies on the spectrum and the energy of graphs. (Doctoral dissertation, Cochin University of Science and Technology). Definition 30, page 16. Emanuele Munarini, Claudio Perelli Cippo, Andrea Scagliola, Norma Zagaglia Salvi, Double graphs, Discrete Mathematics, Volume 308, Issues 2–3, 6 February 2008, Pages 242-254"

I wanted a list containing the two references, and I tried doing what the documentation says, but this does not work?

• If it was an answer to your question, why not post it as an answer? If it was a comment on your question, why not edit it into the body of your question? [Yes, I realize that I haven't addressed the question of how to do lists in comments, which question may be of interests independent of the current context. Sorry] Sep 1 '13 at 6:39
• Let's try $$\ \\ \$$ this Sep 1 '13 at 15:04

Comments are parsed using Markdown mini, which is a very restricted subset of the full Markdown syntax that is available in questions and answers. You can find the supported features in the comment section of the editing help page:

Comments intentionally don't support paragraphs or line breaks, though you probably could cheat with MathJax if you really wanted to.

By design there is no straight-forward way to have line-breaks in comments or do lots of other formatting (see Mad Scientist's answer for details). If you need this, likely you should not be writing a comment in the first place as mentioned by Gerry Myerson. You can use as mentioned by Scott Morrison shift+enter to get line-breaks while typing the comment, but they will not be displayed.

How, to enter your comment. Why not like this: I found two references: [1] The details [2] the other details. (See comment on my answer for a full version; where I used boldface to for further emphasis.) Or, separate with some characters that create an optical break, like // (see other comment). Or, post two comments.

One can use MathJax to force line-breaks. But I consider their usage as quite harmful and thus do not want to contribute to their usage. Just look how ugly the third comment looks.

• I have found two references. [1] Indulal, G. (2007). Studies on the spectrum and the energy of graphs. (Doctoral dissertation, Cochin University of Science and Technology). Definition 30, page 16. [2] Emanuele Munarini, Claudio Perelli Cippo, Andrea Scagliola, Norma Zagaglia Salvi, Double graphs, Discrete Mathematics, Volume 308, Issues 2–3, 6 February 2008, Pages 242-254
– user9072
Sep 1 '13 at 9:19
• I have found two references. Indulal, G. (2007). Studies on the spectrum and the energy of graphs. (Doctoral dissertation, Cochin University of Science and Technology). Definition 30, page 16. // Emanuele Munarini, Claudio Perelli Cippo, Andrea Scagliola, Norma Zagaglia Salvi, Double graphs, Discrete Mathematics, Volume 308, Issues 2–3, 6 February 2008, Pages 242-254
– user9072
Sep 1 '13 at 9:20
• I have found two references. Indulal, G. (2007). Studies on the spectrum and the energy of graphs. (Doctoral dissertation, Cochin University of Science and Technology). Definition 30, page 16.  Emanuele Munarini, Claudio Perelli Cippo, Andrea Scagliola, Norma Zagaglia Salvi, Double graphs, Discrete Mathematics, Volume 308, Issues 2–3, 6 February 2008, Pages 242-254
– user9072
Sep 1 '13 at 9:20