The eval builtin command - [Portability considerations] Document the weird conditional assignment argument parsing.

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http://wiki.bash-hackers.org – Synopsis eval: eval [arg ...] Description eval takes its arguments, concatenates them separated by spaces, and executes the resulting string as Bash code in the current execution environment. eval in Bash works in essentially the same way as most other languages that have an eval function. Perhaps the easiest way to think about eval is that it works in the same way as running bash -c "bash code..." from a script, except in the case of eval, the given code is executed in the current shell … (HowTos)