It beats me to write the Mathematica pattern equivalent to the regex:


Any ideas?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ FWIW, there is no point in writing it as a string pattern if you're happy with it as a regular expression. String patterns and regular expressions are completely equivalent and should be considered nothing more than variant syntactical forms. $\endgroup$ May 2, 2013 at 20:12
  • $\begingroup$ I do not know what \w{2,3} is, but we have the RegularExpression function in Mathematica that handles all the usual regular expressions. $\endgroup$
    – user5939
    May 3, 2013 at 9:28

1 Answer 1


It's easy to search if you break it down:

Regex   Meaning             Mathematica command
\w      word character      WordCharacter
{2,3}   repeat 2 to 3 times Repeated[..., {2, 3}]

Combine it and use as:

StringMatchQ[{"a", "ab", "abc", "abcd"}, Repeated[WordCharacter, {2, 3}]]
(* {False, True, True, False} *)

However, you could just as well use the regular expression itself, which might be simpler if you're familiar with regexes:

StringMatchQ[{"a", "ab", "abc", "abcd"}, RegularExpression["\\w{2,3}"]]

The advantage of this is that it treats _ as a word character, like most flavours of regex, whereas WordCharacter does not consider it valid.

StringMatchQ["a_", #] & /@ {Repeated[WordCharacter, {2, 3}], RegularExpression["\\w{2,3}"]}
(* {False, True } *)

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