Developers generally tend to use characters such as % as a delimiter for storing data in an Oracle database. But because Oracle views the % character as a Wildcard character, it can’t use it as a delimiter effectively. Fortunately, Oracle provides a way out for such a problem?the ESCAPE character.
The ESCAPE keyword comes handy when you have a character in your data which is same as a Wildcard character.
Assume that a field called ObjectID in a table ObjectTable has a value:
Now, suppose you want to retrieve all the values starting with 1% followed by any other characters. Your query will look like this:
SELECT ObjectID FROM ObjectTable WHERE ObjectID LIKE '1\%%' ESCAPE ''
Here the keyword ESCAPE and the character in the quotes () specifies that there is a escape character and the character is specified in the quotes.
This allows you to retrieve the following from the above query: