All behaviour being studied can be explained by the documentation except for escaping double quotes in an inner backticks string inside a double quoted string. Addition to the accepted answer: While I generally agree with @l0b0's answer here, I suspect the placement of bare backticks in the "worst to best" list is at least partly a result of the assumption that $(...) is available everywhere. Here is an example where backticks and $() behave differently: $ echo "$(echo \"test\")" "test" $ echo "`echo \"test\"`" test My understanding was this is because "backslashes (\) inside backticks are handled in a non-obvious manner" But it seems like this is something else because when I remove outer double quotes the results became similar: Bash double quotes inside backticks. After then, bash start parsing the command substitution. This works inside double quotes, or in the absence of quotes. Use when you want to enclose variables or use shell expansion inside a string. Bash escape quotes – Linux Hint, grep "$(date +'%b %d')". This can be seen in columns 2 and 3 in the example above. Putting \ in front of a metacharacter removes its special meaning. No character in the single quote has special meaning. It does not work inside single quotes. This is convenient when you do not want to use the escape characters to change the way the bash interprets the input string. Double Quotes. Single Quotes. First, bash parse the right hand side of assignment to one long string $( cd "$( dirname "${BASH_SOURCE[0]}" )" && pwd ) because double quote can appear inside double quotes. Double quotes ( ” ) is another way to preserve the literal value of the characters. Single Quotes I'm sufficiently disturbed by this that instead of coding a fix for the lexer, I will ask the bash maintainers about it first. And thus ends the lesson of the quotes. Backticks within backticks? The dollar sign ( $ ) and backticks ( ` ) characters can able to keep their special meaning within double quotes. I was at first worried that `date '+%m'` would return a string but apparently expr does the math okay normally, so the problem is how to get it to evaluate an inner set of backticks within the outer set of backticks. In fact, with $() instead of backticks, you should be able to keep the inner double quotes: grep "$(date +"%b %d")" A double quote may be quoted within double quotes by preceding it with a backslash. Wrapping single quotes inside of double quotes will cancel out the expected behavior of the single quotes in the MySQL Query and instead treat it as part of the string. Double quotes escape most characters, except the double quote " the backtick `, the dollar sign $, the backslash \, and the exclamation mark !. Backslash ( ) can also retain its value when it is used by following backticks, double quote and backslash. This allows us to use old-style command substitution with backticks and variable substitution (dollar sign) within double quoted strings: (There are slight differences between the shells on this.) Enclosing characters in double quotes (‘"’) preserves the literal value of all characters within the quotes, with the exception of ‘$’, ‘`’, ‘\’, and, when history expansion is enabled, ‘!When the shell is in POSIX mode (see Bash POSIX Mode), the ‘!’ has no special meaning within double quotes, even when history expansion is enabled. In the meantime, all my notes are in the attached text file. All characters within are interpreted as regular characters except for $ or ` which will be expanded on the shell. 3.1.2.3 Double Quotes. Inserting two double quotes in the middle of the string will cancel out one of them. Double quotes. All characters within single quotes are interpreted as a string character. How can I tell it to evaluate an expression within another expression evaluation? 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