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How to Delete a Message Without Opening the Next in Mac OS X Mail

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If you delete a message, Mac OS X Mail automatically opens the next. Usually, I like this. But sometimes (if the next message looks like it contains sensitive information, for example) I don't.

Then I'd like Mail to just delete the current message, and then display no message at all. Fortunately, the following keyboard shortcut lets me (and you) do that easily.

Delete a Message Without Opening the Next in Mac OS X Mail

To delete a message without having Mac OS X Mail open the next message automatically:

  • Keep the Option key pressed while clicking on the Delete toolbar icon or hitting Del.

Note that this will delete the message irrevocably without moving it to the Trash folder.

(Updated December 2012)

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