Hibernate Tips: How to escape table and column names

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One of my entities represents an order which a customer placed in my online store. I would like to call that entity Order, but Hibernate generates SQL statements containing syntax errors and throws SQLGrammarExceptions. How can I escape the table name to avoid the syntax errors?


By default, Hibernate maps an entity to a database table with the same name. So, in this case, Hibernate tries to map the Order entity to the Order table. But Order is a reserved word in SQL and can’t be used as a database identifier. You either need to choose a different table name or use a delimited identifier.

The definition of a delimited identifier is pretty simple. It’s defined in section 2.13 of the JPA specification. You just need to set the table name with a @Table annotation and enclose it in double quotes.

@Table(name = "\"Order\"")
public class Order { ... }

You can not only use this approach with the @Table annotation. It’s also supported by all other JPA annotations that allow you to define a database identifier. These are:

  • @EntityResult
  • @FieldResult
  • @ColumnResult
  • @CollectionTable
  • @Column
  • @DiscriminatorColumn
  • @ForeignKey
  • @Index
  • @JoinColumn
  • @JoinTable
  • @MapKeyColumn
  • @MapKeyJoinColumn
  • @NamedStoredProcedureQuery
  • @OrderColumn
  • @PrimaryKeyJoinColumn
  • @SecondaryTable
  • @SequenceGenerator
  • @StoredProcedureParameter
  • @Table
  • @TableGenerator
  • @UniqueConstraint

When you specify the table name like this, Hibernate and all other JPA implementations will use the defined delimited identifier in all generated SQL statements.

17:13:21,070 DEBUG [org.hibernate.SQL] - insert into "Order" (orderNumber, version, id) values (?, ?, ?)

Learn more:

If you like to learn more about JPA’s @Table annotation, you should take a look at this Hibernate Tip: How to define schema and table names.

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