in the time it took to reply, you could have tried both...
well seeing as how it works without escaping, i don't see what the difference would be for escaping one of them.
Because if you don't escape the last dot to make it literal, it could match something other than a dot.
And if you're only matching numbers, you should use [0-9]+ instead of .*:
Code:RewriteRule ^articles/([0-9]+)\.html$ /news.php?id=$1 [L]