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Text::Wrap - line wrapping to form simple paragraphs


Example 1

use Text::Wrap

$initial_tab = "\t";	# Tab before first line
$subsequent_tab = "";	# All other lines flush left

print wrap($initial_tab, $subsequent_tab, @text);
print fill($initial_tab, $subsequent_tab, @text);

@lines = wrap($initial_tab, $subsequent_tab, @text);

@paragraphs = fill($initial_tab, $subsequent_tab, @text);

Example 2

use Text::Wrap qw(wrap $columns $huge);

$columns = 132;		# Wrap at 132 characters
$huge = 'die';
$huge = 'wrap';
$huge = 'overflow';

Example 3

use Text::Wrap

$Text::Wrap::columns = 72;
print wrap('', '', @text);


Text::Wrap::wrap() is a very simple paragraph formatter. It formats a single paragraph at a time by breaking lines at word boundries. Indentation is controlled for the first line ($initial_tab) and all subsquent lines ($subsequent_tab) independently. Please note: $initial_tab and $subsequent_tab are the literal strings that will be used: it is unlikley you would want to pass in a number.

Lines are wrapped at $Text::Wrap::columns columns. $Text::Wrap::columns should be set to the full width of your output device. In fact, every resulting line will have length of no more than $columns - 1.

Beginner note: In example 2, above $columns is imported into the local namespace, and set locally. In example 3, $Text::Wrap::columns is set in its own namespace without importing it.

When words that are longer than $columns are encountered, they are broken up. wrap() adds a "\n" at column $columns. This behavior can be overridden by setting $huge to 'die' or to 'overflow'. When set to 'die', large words will cause die() to be called. When set to 'overflow', large words will be left intact.

Text::Wrap::fill() is a simple multi-paragraph formatter. It formats each paragraph separately and then joins them together when it's done. It will destory any whitespace in the original text. It breaks text into paragraphs by looking for whitespace after a newline. In other respects it acts like wrap().

When called in list context, wrap() will return a list of lines and fill() will return a list of paragraphs.

Historical notes: Older versions of wrap() and fill() always returned strings. Also, 'die' used to be the default value of $huge. Now, 'wrap' is the default value.


print wrap("\t","","This is a bit of text that forms 
	a normal book-style paragraph");


David Muir Sharnoff <> with help from Tim Pierce and many many others.