Emacs: Xah Emacs Lisp Mode

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This is the home page of xah-elisp-mode, a major mode for emacs lisp.

screenshot xah-elisp-mode-2013-05-05
screenshot emacs-lisp-mode-2013-05-05
Default emacs-lisp-mode

How is this different from the builtin emacs-lisp-mode?

  1. Syntax coloring of 99% statistically most frequently used elisp functions.
  2. Completion for function names and function templates. (press Tab after the word, or space after full name.)
  3. 1 to 3 letters abbrevs for top 50 most used functions. e.g. “bsnp” → “buffer-substring-no-properties”
  4. Convenient formatting command that formats entire sexp expression unit. (press Tab before line or end of line.)


Download here: https://github.com/xahlee/xah-elisp-mode

Also on MELPA http://melpa.org/#/xah-elisp-mode 〔➤ Emacs: How to Install Packages Using ELPA, MELPA, Marmalade

For any problems, file a report on github, or comment here.


  1. Semantic syntax coloring. Emacs lisp words are colored by their purpose.
  2. Keyword completion with ido-mode interface. Press Tab ↹ after a word to complete symbol.
  3. Smart prettify code. Press Tab ↹ before a word to reformat the current sexp tree.
  4. Press Space to expand a lisp symbol into its param template.
  5. Top 100 most used functions have abbrev with 1 to 3 letters. Press Space expand into a function template.

No dependency on third-party package. Only require bare GNU emacs.


Single letter abbrevs are:

Call list-abbrevs to see the full list.


there are still some big tasks to do.

If you would like these features, different from traditional idea of line-based indentation, please do donate.

PayPal to 〔xah@xahlee.org〕. In the comment box, say “fund for elisp mode”.

or, Buy Xah Emacs Tutorial and add a comment “fund for elisp mode”.

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