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31.8.1 Kill Ring Concepts

The kill ring records killed text as strings in a list, most recent first. A short kill ring, for example, might look like this:

("some text" "a different piece of text" "even older text")

When the list reaches kill-ring-max entries in length, adding a new entry automatically deletes the last entry.

When kill commands are interwoven with other commands, each kill command makes a new entry in the kill ring. Multiple kill commands in succession build up a single kill ring entry, which would be yanked as a unit; the second and subsequent consecutive kill commands add text to the entry made by the first one.

For yanking, one entry in the kill ring is designated the “front” of the ring. Some yank commands “rotate” the ring by designating a different element as the “front”. But this virtual rotation doesn’t change the list itself—the most recent entry always comes first in the list.