signature lines

Type a sequence of underscores

A sig­na­ture line is a hor­i­zon­tal line aligned with adja­cent text.

Typog­ra­phy purists avoid accom­plish­ing any­thing by hold­ing down keys on the key­board. But in this case it’s the sim­plest solu­tion. To make a sig­na­ture line, hold down the under­score key (shift + hyphen) until you get the length you need.

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A rival school of thought sug­gests you should type a series of word spaces and for­mat them with under­lin­ing.

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Same thing, right? Not quite. There are three good rea­sons to pre­fer under­scores to under­lined word spaces.

  1. If you need to quickly rid a doc­u­ment of under­lin­ing, you might want to select all the text and then uncheck the under­lin­ing option. But this will wreck sig­na­ture lines made out of under­lined word spaces—they will dis­ap­pear.

  2. If you need to quickly ensure you only have one space between sen­tences, you might want to search for and replace any dou­ble spaces. But this will also wreck sig­na­ture lines made out of word spaces—by par­tially delet­ing them.

  3. Under­score char­ac­ters don’t depend on for­mat­ting, so they will look the same no mat­ter where they’re copied and pasted. Under­lined word spaces may not.