wc – word count


wc [ -lwrbc ] [ file ... ]


Wc counts lines, words, runes, syntactically-invalid UTF codes and bytes in the named files, or in the standard input if no file is named. A word is a maximal string of characters delimited by spaces, tabs or newlines. The count of runes includes invalid codes.

If the optional argument is present, just the specified counts (lines, words, runes, broken UTF codes or bytes) are selected by the letters l, w, r, b, or c. Otherwise, lines, words and bytes (-lwc) are reported.




The Unicode Standard has many blank characters scattered through it, but wc looks for only ASCII space, tab and newline.

Wc should have options to count suboptimal UTF codes and bytes that cannot occur in any UTF code.