Help:HTML in wikitext

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The MediaWiki software, that drives Wikipedia, allows the use of a subset of HTML5 elements, or tags and their attributes, for presentation formatting.[1] But most HTML can be included by using equivalent wiki markup or templates; these are preferred within articles, as they are simpler for most editors, and less intrusive in the editing window. But HTML is useful outside of articles, for example for formatting within templates. For help with Cascading Style Sheet use within Wikipedia see Help:Cascading Style Sheets.

Some tags look like HTML, but are actually MediaWiki parser and extension tags, and so are really wiki markup. HTML in pages can be checked for HTML5 compliance by using validation.

Tutorials[edit]

This help page gives only an overview of allowed markup. For further assistance and detailed specifications:

Attributes[edit]

HTML attributes provide additional information about an element and are always specified in the start tag. They are formatted as a name/value pair like name="value".

Global attributes apply to all tags. Attributes not listed here are not allowed by MediaWiki[1]:

  • class: one or more classifications to which the element belongs. See Wikipedia:Catalogue of CSS classes.
  • dir: text direction— "ltr" (left-to-right), "rtl" (right-to-left) or "auto".
  • id: unique identifier for the element.
  • lang: primary language for the contents of the element per BCP 47. The MediaWiki software automatically adds the xml:lang attribute whenever lang is defined, but xml:lang will no longer be passed when included as a separate attribute.
  • style: applies CSS styling to the contents of the element.
  • title: advisory information associated with the element.

HTML5 microdata attributes apply to all tags:[2]

  • Any attribute beginning with data-
  • itemid
  • itemprop
  • itemref
  • itemscope
  • itemtype

Other tags such as <table> support specific attributes – these are listed in the appropriate section.

Markup Renders as
This is <span style="color:red">red</span> text. 
This is red text.

The MediaWiki Sanitizer.php does some cleanup on attributes. A best practice is to use the proper syntax.

  • Discards attributes not on a whitelist for the given element.
  • Turns broken or invalid entities into plaintext.
  • Double-quotes all attribute values.
  • Attributes without values are given the name as value.
  • Double attributes are discarded.
  • Unsafe style attributes are discarded.
  • Prepends space if there are attributes.

Elements[edit]

These HTML elements are supported by the MediaWiki software. This section gives a brief overview of the HTML element, an example, relevant wikimarkup and templates.

Basic[edit]

h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6[edit]

Further information: Help:Section and MOS:HEAD

The <h1>...</h1> through <h6>...</h6> tags are headings for the sections with which they are associated. <h1> is used for the article title. Headings are styled through CSS and added to the page's table of contents.

Markup Renders as
<h1>Heading 1</h1>
<h2>Heading 2</h2>
<h3>Heading 3</h3>
<h4>Heading 4</h4>
<h5>Heading 5</h5>
<h6>Heading 6</h6> 
Heading 1
Heading 2
Heading 3
Heading 4
Heading 5
Heading 6

Wikimarkup: surround the text with the appropriate number of equal signs. Headers formatted with wikimarkup add an [edit] link.

Markup Renders as
= Heading 1 =
== Heading 2 ==
=== Heading 3 ===
==== Heading 4 ====
===== Heading 5 =====
====== Heading 6 ======
 
Heading 1
Heading 2
Heading 3
Heading 4
Heading 5
Heading 6

Wiki headers use the following default CSS:

Wikimarkup HTML Style
= Heading = <h1> color: #000000; background: none; overflow: hidden; page-break-after: avoid; font-size: 1.8em; font-family: Georgia,Times,serif; margin-top: 1em; margin-bottom: 0.25em; line-height: 1.3; padding: 0; border-bottom: 1px solid #AAAAAA;
== Heading == <h2> color: #000000; background: none; overflow: hidden; page-break-after: avoid; font-size: 1.5em; font-family: Georgia,Times,serif; margin-top: 1em; margin-bottom: 0.25em; line-height: 1.3; padding: 0; border-bottom: 1px solid #AAAAAA;
=== Heading === <h3> color: #000000; background: none; overflow: hidden; page-break-after: avoid; font-size: 1.17em; font-weight: bold; margin-top: 0.3em; margin-bottom: 0; line-height: 1.6; padding-top: 0.5em; padding-bottom: 0;
==== Heading ==== <h4> color: #000000; background: none; overflow: hidden; page-break-after: avoid; font-size: 100%; font-weight: bold; margin-top: 0.3em; margin-bottom: 0; line-height: 1.6; padding-top: 0.5em; padding-bottom: 0;
===== Heading ===== <h5> color: #000000; background: none; overflow: hidden; page-break-after: avoid; font-size: 100%; font-weight: bold; margin-top: 0.3em; margin-bottom: 0; line-height: 1.6; padding-top: 0.5em; padding-bottom: 0;
====== Heading ====== <h6> color: #000000; background: none; overflow: hidden; page-break-after: avoid; font-size: 100%; font-weight: bold; margin-top: 0.3em; margin-bottom: 0; line-height: 1.6; padding-top: 0.5em; padding-bottom: 0;

Templates: {{fake heading}} for use in documentation

p[edit]

<p>...</p> tag places content into a separate paragraph.

Markup Renders as
<p>HyperText Markup Language</p><p>HyperText Markup Language</p> 

HyperText Markup Language

HyperText Markup Language

Wikimarkup: Separate paragraphs by a single blank line.

Markup Renders as
HyperText Markup Language

HyperText Markup Language 
HyperText Markup Language

HyperText Markup Language

br[edit]

<br> or <br /> inserts a line break. Both versions of the break are supported by HTML5. </br> is invalid.

Markup Renders as
HyperText<br>Markup Language 
HyperText
Markup Language

Templates:

  • {{break}} adds multiple line breaks.
  • {{crlf2}} adds adds a true carriage return and line feed.
  • {{-}} adds a break with styling to clear floating elements.
  • {{plainlist}} creates an unbulleted list.

hr[edit]

Further information: WP:LINE

<hr> represents a paragraph-level thematic break and presents as a horizontal rule.

Markup Renders as
<hr> 

Wikimarkup: use ----

Markup Renders as
---- 

Templates: {{hr}}

comment[edit]

Further information: WP:COMMENT

<!--...--> formats the enclosed text as a hidden comment.

Markup Renders as
HyperText<!--Markup Language--> 
HyperText

Formatting[edit]

abbr[edit]

<abbr>...</abbr> creates a tooltip to define an abbreviation or acronym that is displayed on mouse-over.

Markup Renders as
<abbr title="HyperText Markup Language">HTML</abbr> 
HTML

Support: not supported by IE6 or IE7.

Templates: {{abbr}}; supports Unicode display

b[edit]

Further information: MOS:BOLD

<b>...</b> formats text stylistically offset from other text (bold) without conveying extra importance.

Markup Renders as
<b>HyperText Markup Language</b> 
HyperText Markup Language

Wikimarkup: Use ''' to open and close bold text.

Markup Renders as
'''HyperText Markup Language''' 
HyperText Markup Language

bdi[edit]

<bdi>...</bdi> isolates the content from the surrounding text-direction settings.

Markup Renders as
اليمين إلى اليسارleft to right
 
اليمين إلى اليسارleft to right
اليمين إلى اليسار<bdi>left to right</bdi> 
اليمين إلى اليسارleft to right

Support: Firefox, Chrome

bdo[edit]

<bdo>...</bdo> specifies the text direction.

Attributes and values:

  • dir — Specifies the text direction.
    • ltr
    • rtl
Markup Renders as
<bdo dir="rtl">HyperText Markup Language</bdo> 
HyperText Markup Language

blockquote[edit]

Further information: MOS:QUOTE

<blockquote>...</blockquote> presents text in an offset block.

Markup Renders as
<blockquote>HyperText Markup Language</blockquote> 

HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{quote}}; supports pre-formatted attribution and source parameters. For other specialized quotation templates, see Category:Quotation templates.

cite[edit]

<cite>...</cite> contains the title of a work and by default is formatted in italics. This is a new definition in HTML5— in the previous XML implementation <cite> was used to contain a citation or a reference to other sources.

Markup Renders as
<cite>HyperText Markup Language</cite> 
HyperText Markup Language

code[edit]

<code>...</code> formats a section of computer code. MediaWiki applies CSS styling to display <code> in a monospace font.

Markup Renders as
<code>HyperText Markup Language</code> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{code}} uses <syntaxhighlight>.

data[edit]

<data>...</data> formats a machine-readable version of contents.

Markup Renders as
<data value="978-0764502149">HTML for Dummies</data> 
HTML for Dummies

Attributes: value

del[edit]

<del>...</del> formats deleted text.

Markup Renders as
<del>HyperText Markup Language</del> 
HyperText Markup Language

dfn[edit]

<dfn>...</dfn> is used for indicating a definition.

Markup Renders as
<dfn>Definition</dfn> 
Definition

Templates: {{dfn}}

em[edit]

Further information: MOS:ITALIC

<em>...</em> represents a span of text with emphatic stress.

Markup Renders as
<em>HyperText Markup Language</em> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{em}}

i[edit]

Further information: MOS:ITALIC

<i>...</i> represents a span of text offset from its surrounding content without conveying any extra emphasis or importance, and for which the conventional typographic presentation is italic text.

Markup Renders as
<i>HyperText Markup Language</i> 
HyperText Markup Language

Wikimarkup: Use '' to open and close italic text.

Markup Renders as
''HyperText Markup Language'' 
HyperText Markup Language

ins[edit]

<ins>...</ins> indicates a range of text that has been added. Styled as underlined text. Used on talk pages to indicate refactored text; see WP:REDACT.

Markup Renders as
<ins>HyperText Markup Language</ins> 
HyperText Markup Language

kbd[edit]

<kbd>...</kbd> indicates user input such as keyboard input or voice commands.

Markup Renders as
Press <kbd>Enter</kbd> 
Press Enter

Templates:

  • {{kbd}} applies gray styling
  • {{key press}} renders illustrated keys and keystrokes.

mark[edit]

<mark>...</mark> represents a run of text in one document marked or highlighted for reference purposes, due to its relevance in another context. Marked text is formatted with a yellow background by default.

Markup Renders as
<mark>HyperText Markup Language</mark> 
HyperText Markup Language
<mark style="background:lightblue">HyperText Markup Language</mark> 
HyperText Markup Language

Support: Not supported by Internet Explorer 8 and below.

pre[edit]

<pre>...</pre> element represents a block of preformatted text. In MediaWiki, <pre> is actually a parser tag and not HTML, but the function is the same.

Markup Renders as
<pre>HyperText Markup Language</pre> 
HyperText Markup Language

HTML entities

<pre> parses HTML entities. If you want to escape this, replace & with &amp;.

Markup Renders as
<pre>&amp;</pre> 
&

<pre>&lt;</pre> 
<

<pre>&amp;amp;</pre> 
&amp;

<pre>&amp;lt;</pre> 
&lt;

Templates:

  • {{pre}} wraps text that overflows the page.
  • {{pre2}} wraps or uses scrollbox.

q[edit]

<q>...</q> is used to mark a short quotation.

Markup Renders as
<q>HyperText Markup Language</q> 
HyperText Markup Language

rb, rp, rt, ruby[edit]

Further information: Ruby character

<ruby>...</ruby> marks spans of phrasing content with ruby annotations.

<rt>...</rt> marks the ruby text component of a ruby annotation; the ruby text shows in a reduced size over top of the normal characters.

<rb>...</rb> (formerly obsolete) Used to mark base text in a ruby annotation

<rp>...</rp> is used to provide parentheses around a ruby text component of a ruby annotation, to be shown by user agents that don’t support ruby annotations.

Browsers that do not support ruby characters will show the ruby text in normal size, enclosed in parentheses and after the normal content.

Markup Renders as
<ruby>
東<rp>(</rp><rt>とう</rt><rp>)</rp>
京<rp>(</rp><rt>きょう</rt><rp>)</rp>
</ruby> 

(とう)(きょう)

Templates:

s[edit]

<s>...</s> is used to indicate content that is no longer accurate or relevant and that has been struck from the page. It is not appropriate when indicating document edits; to mark a span of text as having been removed from a document, use <del>.

Markup Renders as
<s>HyperText Markup Language</s> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{strikethrough}}

samp[edit]

<samp>...</samp> indicates output from a program or computing system.

Markup Renders as
<samp>HyperText Markup Language</samp> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{samp}} applies gray styling

small[edit]

Further information: WP:FONTSIZE

<small>...</small> format small text.

Markup Renders as
<small>HyperText Markup Language</small> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates:

  • {{small}} uses <small style="font-size:85%;">. {{small}} is recommended over <small> since not all browsers render small text the same.

strong[edit]

<strong>...</strong> formats a span of text with strong importance.

Markup Renders as
<strong>HyperText Markup Language</strong> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{strong}}

sub[edit]

Further information: WP:SUBSCRIPT

<sub>...</sub> formats a span of text as a subscript.

Markup Renders as
HyperText <sub>Markup Language</sub> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates:

  • {{sub}} (subscript text)
  • {{subsub}} (subscript subscript text)
  • {{ssub}} (subscript, small text)
  • {{sup}} (superscript text)
  • {{su}} (superscript
    subscript
    text)
  • {{sup sub}} (textsup
    sub
    )
  • {{e}} (1.23×104)

sup[edit]

Further information: WP:SUPSCRIPT

<sup>...</sup> formats a span of text as a superscript.

Markup Renders as
HyperText <sup>Markup Language</sup> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates:

  • {{sub}} (subscript text)
  • {{subsub}} (subscript subscript text)
  • {{ssub}} (subscript, small text)
  • {{sup}} (superscript text)
  • {{su}} (superscript
    subscript
    text)
  • {{sup sub}} (textsup
    sub
    )
  • {{e}} (1.23×104)

time[edit]

<time>...</time> defines either a time (24 hour clock), or a date in the Gregorian calendar, optionally with a time and a time-zone offset.

Markup Renders as
<time>10:00</time> 

Attributes: datetime

Support: Not supported by Internet Explorer 8 and below.

u[edit]

Further information: MOS:BADEMPHASIS and MOS:QUOTE

<u>...</u> represents a span of text offset from its surrounding content without conveying any extra emphasis or importance, and for which the conventional typographic presentation is underlining; for example, a span of text in Chinese that is a proper name (a Chinese proper name mark), or span of text that is known to be misspelled.

Markup Renders as
<u>HyperText Markup Language</u> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{underline}}

var[edit]

Further information: MOS:ITALIC

<var>...</var> formats text in italics to indicate a variable in a mathematical expression or programming context, or placeholder text that the reader is meant to mentally replace with some other literal value.

Markup Renders as
<var>HyperText Markup Language</var> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates:

  • {{var}}
  • {{varserif}} formatted in italic serif to differentiate characters

wbr[edit]

Further information: Wikipedia:Line-break handling

<wbr> is a word break opportunity; that is, it specifies where it would be OK to add a line-break where a word is too long, or it is perceived that the browser will break a line at the wrong place.

Markup Renders as
Now is the time to become a power editor, by learning HyperText Markup Language 
Now is the time to become a power editor, by learning HyperText Markup Language
Now is the time to become a power editor, by learning Hyper<wbr>Text Markup Language 
Now is the time to become a power editor, by learning HyperText Markup Language

As the browser window is adjusted narrower, the second example wraps between Hyper and Text.

Lists[edit]

Further information: Help:List and MOS:LIST

Do not leave blank lines between items in a list unless there is a reason to do so, since this causes the MediaWiki software to interpret each item as beginning a new list.

dl, dt, dd[edit]

<dl>...</dl>, <dt>...</dt> and <dd>...</dd> are used to create a description list (formerly definition list) with terms and descriptions. Terms are displayed in bold and descriptions are indented. Each term must include one or more descriptions.

Markup Renders as
<dl>
<dt>Term</dt>
<dd>Definition 1</dd>
<dd>Definition 2</dd>
<dd>Definition 3</dd>
<dd>Definition 4</dd>
</dl> 
Term
Definition 1
Definition 2
Definition 3
Definition 4

Wikimarkup: <dt> is created using ; while automatically enclosed in <dl>...</dl>. <dd> is created using : for each value. For a single or first value the : can be placed on the same line after ; where subsequent values must be placed on separate lines.

Markup Renders as
; Term
: Definition 1
: Definition 2
: Definition 3
: Definition 4 
Term
Definition 1
Definition 2
Definition 3
Definition 4

Templates: {{defn}}

ol, ul, li[edit]

<ol>...</ol> represents an ordered list; <ul>...</ul> represents an unordered list; <li>...</li> represents a list item within either type of list.

Markup Renders as
<ol>
<li>Item 1</li>
<li>Item 2</li>
<li>Item 3</li>
<li>Item 4</li>
</ol> 
  1. Item 1
  2. Item 2
  3. Item 3
  4. Item 4

<ul>
<li>Item 1</li>
<li>Item 2</li>
<li>Item 3</li>
<li>Item 4</li>
</ul> 
  • Item 1
  • Item 2
  • Item 3
  • Item 4

Wikimarkup: use * for items in an unordered list and # for ordered lists.

Markup Renders as
# Item 1
# Item 2
# Item 3
# Item 4 
  1. Item 1
  2. Item 2
  3. Item 3
  4. Item 4
* Item 1
* Item 2
* Item 3
* Item 4 
  • Item 1
  • Item 2
  • Item 3
  • Item 4

Templates: for a variety of specialized uses, see Category:Wikipedia list formatting templates.

Containers[edit]

div[edit]

Further information: Span and div

<div>...</div> is a generic container for flow content that displays as a block element.

Markup Renders as
HyperText <div>Markup</div> Language 
HyperText
Markup
Language

span[edit]

Further information: Span and div

<span>...</span> is a container for flow content that displays as an inline element.

Markup Renders as
HyperText <span>Markup</span> Language 
HyperText Markup Language

Tables[edit]

Further information: Help:Table and MOS:TABLES

table, td, tr[edit]

<table>...</table> defines a table.

<tr>...</tr> defines a table row.

<td>...</td> defines a data cell with contents that may include text, links, images, lists, forms, other tables, etc.

Markup Renders as
<table border=1>
<tr>
<td>data</td>
<td>data</td>
</tr>
</table> 
data data

Attributes:

  • <table>:
    Allowed but not recommended: border="" and border="1"
    Allowed but obsolete: border (with a non-empty value different from "1"), align, bgcolor, cellpadding, cellspacing, frame, rules, summary, width[3]
  • <td>: colspan, headers, rowspan
    Allowed but obsolete: abbr, align, axis, bgcolor, scope, height, nowrap, valign, width[3]

th[edit]

<th>...</th> defines a table header; styled as centered and bold.

Markup Renders as
<table border="1">
<tr>
<th>Header</th>
<th>Header</th>
</tr>
<tr>
<td>data</td>
<td>data</td>
</tr>
</table> 
Header Header
data data

Attributes:

  • <th>: colspan, headers, rowspan, scope
    Allowed but obsolete: abbr, align, axis, bgcolor, scope, height, nowrap, valign, width[3]

caption[edit]

<caption>...</caption> adds a caption to a table.

Markup Renders as
<table border=1>
<caption>Caption</caption>
<tr>
<td>data</td>
<td>data</td>
</tr>
</table> 
Caption
data data

Attributes:

  • <caption>:
    Allowed but obsolete: align[3]

thead, tfoot, tbody[edit]

<thead>, <tfoot> and <tbody> are not supported, but are automatically generated when the page is rendered.

Obsolete elements[edit]

These elements are now obsolete in HTML5, but still supported by browsers.[3] These tags either have an alternate tag or a template that replaces their function with CSS.

big[edit]

<big>...</big> (obsolete) formats text in a larger font size.

Markup Renders as
<big>HyperText Markup Language</big> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{big}} uses CSS.

center[edit]

For centering tables, see Help:Table#Centering tables.

<center>...</center> (obsolete) is used to center text elements.

Markup Renders as
<center>HyperText Markup Language</center> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{center}} uses CSS.

font[edit]

<font>...</font> (obsolete) is used to set the font size, font face and color of text.

Markup Renders as
<font size="3" face="verdana" color="green">HyperText Markup Language</font> 
HyperText Markup Language

Templates: {{font}} uses CSS.

strike[edit]

<strike>...</strike> (obsolete) formats strike-through characters; use <s> instead.

Markup Renders as
<strike>HyperText Markup Language</strike> 
HyperText Markup Language

tt[edit]

<tt>...</tt> (obsolete) formats text in a fixed-width font. Use <code>, <kbd> or <samp> instead.

Markup Renders as
<tt>HyperText Markup Language</tt> 
HyperText Markup Language

Unsupported elements[edit]

These elements are not supported, but have equivalent wiki markup. Attempting to use any element not whitelisted by Sanitizer.php will result in the markup showing as plain text.

a[edit]

For more details on this topic, see Help:Wiki markup § Links and URLs.

<a> is used to create links. Use the [[ ]] wikimarkup for internal links and [ ] for external links.

input[edit]

For more details on this topic, see mw:Extension:InputBox.

<input> is used to create forms. The <inputbox> extension tag is used to create a text box with a button.

HTML Tidy[edit]

HTML Tidy is enabled for the English Wikipedia. Tidy parses the MediaWiki output and cleans it up to ensure that valid HTML is rendered. For example, <br>, </br>, <br/>, <br.> will all render as <br />. Tidy is not enabled for MediaWiki interface pages. Tidy is not perfect, and has been known to introduce errors.

Exceptions[edit]

In some pages in the MediaWiki namespace, typically the short messages like button labels, HTML is not parsed, and tags will be exposed.

User and sitewide CSS and Javascript pages are interpreted as if inside a <pre> block. See Help:User style.

Validation[edit]

The MediaWiki software attempts to fix HTML errors, but it does not catch all of them. Where HTML is used, it is helpful to verify it with the W3C Markup Validation Service.

Parser and extension tags[edit]

Shortcuts:

The MediaWiki software adds elements that look and act like HTML tags. Parser tags are included in MediaWiki whereas extension tags are added by optional software extensions. Installed tags are listed at Special:Version.

Parser tags 
<gallery>, <nowiki>, <pre>
Extension tags 
<categorytree>, <charinsert>, <gallery>, <hiero>, <imagemap>, <inputbox>, <math>, <nowiki>, <poem>, <ref>, <references>, <score>, <section>, <syntaxhighlight> (alias <source>), <templatedata>, <timeline>

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Allowable elements and attributes are defined in the Sanitizer.php module.
  2. ^ "The microdata model". HTML Living Standard. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "HTML5: A vocabulary and associated APIs for HTML and XHTML: Obsolete Features". W3C. 31 July 2014. 

External links[edit]