The asterisk /ˈæst(ə)rɪsk/ *, from Late Latin asteriscus, from Ancient Greek ἀστερίσκος, asteriskos, "little star",[1][2] is a typographical symbol. It is so called because it resembles a conventional image of a star.

In UnicodeU+002A * ASTERISK (HTML * · *, *)
See alsoU+203B REFERENCE MARK (HTML ※) (komejirushi)

Computer scientists and mathematicians often vocalize it as star (as, for example, in the A* search algorithm or C*-algebra). In English, an asterisk is usually five-pointed in sans-serif typefaces, six-pointed in serif typefaces,[3] and six- or eight-pointed when handwritten. Its most common use is to call out a footnote. It is also often used to censor offensive words, and on the Internet, to indicate a correction to a previous message.

In computer science, the asterisk is commonly used as a wildcard character, or to denote pointers, repetition, or multiplication.