[tex-k] Bug-report for the TeXbook: Not all non-primitive control-sequences are defined, ultimately, in terms of the primitive ones.

Yannis Haralambous yannis1962 at gmail.com
Sat Dec 10 18:29:57 CET 2022

I think the debate is about the semantics of the verb "to define" and of the expression "in terms" in Don's text.

If by "defined" he meant "defined through the \def or the \let command" and if by "in terms" he meant that
"strictly only that" then Ukirch might have bern right.

But IMHO this is not what Don meant.

What he meant is that in the expansion of commands you can use many things including primitive and non-primitive
commands, but if you continue expanding you will end up with having no non-primitive commands.

If he meant otherwise he would use neither "in terms" nor "ultimately". This statement is not part of a formal grammar,
it is just a comment about the special status of primitive commands.

> Le 10 déc. 2022 à 16:18, ud.usenetcorrespondence at web.de a écrit :
>>>> ***All other control sequences are
>>>> | defined, ultimately, in terms of the primitive ones.***


 <http://www.imt-atlantique.fr/>	Yannis HARALAMBOUS
Computer Science Department
 <https://www.imt-atlantique.fr/en/person/yannis-haralambous> <https://twitter.com/y_haralambous> <https://www.linkedin.com/in/yannis-haralambous-5529073?trk=hp-identity-name>Technopôle Brest-Iroise CS 83818
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Une École de l'IMT <http://www.imt.fr/>

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‌(John M. Lawler, ‌English Language Forum)‌

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