This document describes techniques for, and systems that enable, a multi-stroke smart ink gesture language. The described techniques enable a digital ink user interface that allows a display, that is capable of receiving a digital ink stroke from a passive stylus or an active pen, to receive the digital ink stroke as either a content input or an action input. The digital ink stroke may be determined to be an action input based on proximity to, intersection with, or chronological immediacy to a prior-received digital ink stroke. When multiple digital ink strokes are determined to represent a multi-stroke gesture associated with an action input, the action input is provided to the application, which can then perform the action associated with the action input. The multi-stroke gesture allows users to input both content and actions using the passive stylus or active pen and natural digital inking strokes.