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HTML Lists


HTML can have Unordered Lists, Ordered Lists, or Description Lists:

Unordered HTML List

  • The first item
  • The second item
  • The third item
  • The fourth item

Ordered HTML List

  1. The first item
  2. The second item
  3. The third item
  4. The fourth item

HTML Description List

The first item
Description of item
The second item
Description of item



Unordered HTML Lists

An unordered list starts with the <ul> tag. Each list item starts with the <li> tag.

The list items will be marked with bullets (small black circles).

Unordered List:

<ul>
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea</li>
  <li>Milk</li>
</ul>

Try it Yourself »


Unordered HTML Lists - The Style Attribute

A style attribute can be added to an unordered list, to define the style of the marker:

Style Description
list-style-type:disc The list items will be marked with bullets (default)
list-style-type:circle The list items will be marked with circles
list-style-type:square The list items will be marked with squares
list-style-type:none The list items will not be marked

Disc:

<ul style="list-style-type:disc">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ul>

Try it Yourself »

Circle:

<ul style="list-style-type:circle">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ul>

Try it Yourself »

Square:

<ul style="list-style-type:square">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ul>

Try it Yourself »

None:

<ul style="list-style-type:none">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ul>

Try it Yourself »

Note Using a type attribute <ul type="disc">, instead of <ul style="list-style-type:disc">, also works.
But in HTML5, the type attribute is not valid in unordered lists, only in ordered list.


Ordered HTML Lists

An ordered list starts with the <ol> tag. Each list item starts with the <li> tag.

The list items will be marked with numbers.

Ordered List:

<ol>
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Milk</li>
</ol>

Try it Yourself »


Ordered HTML Lists - The Type Attribute

A type attribute can be added to an ordered list, to define the type of the marker:

Type Description
type="1" The list items will be numbered with numbers (default)
type="A" The list items will be numbered with uppercase letters
type="a" The list items will be numbered with lowercase letters
type="I" The list items will be numbered with uppercase roman numbers
type="i" The list items will be numbered with lowercase roman numbers

Numbers:

<ol type="1">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ol>

Try it Yourself »

Upper Case:

<ol type="A">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ol>

Try it Yourself »

Lower Case:

<ol type="a">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ol>

Try it Yourself »

Roman Upper Case:

<ol type="I">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ol>

Try it Yourself »

Roman Lower Case:

<ol type="i">
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
  <li>Milk</li>
</ol>

Try it Yourself »


HTML Description Lists

A description list, is a list of terms, with a description of each term.

The <dl> tag defines a description list.

The <dt> tag defines the term (name), and the <dd> tag defines the data (description).

Description List:

<dl>
  <dt>Coffee</dt>
  <dd>- black hot drink</dd>
  <dt>Milk</dt>
  <dd>- white cold drink</dd>
</dl>

Try it Yourself »


Nested HTML Lists

List can be nested (lists inside lists).

Nested Lists:

<ul>
  <li>Coffee</li>
  <li>Tea
    <ul>
      <li>Black tea</li>
      <li>Green tea</li>
    </ul>
  </li>
  <li>Milk</li>
</ul>

Try it Yourself »

Note List items can contain new list, and other HTML elements, like images and links, etc.


Horizontal Lists

HTML lists can be styled in many different ways with CSS.

One popular way, is to style a list to display horizontally:

Horizontal List:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>

<head>
<style>
ul#menu li {
    display:inline;
}
</style>
</head>

<body>

<h2>Horizontal List</h2>

<ul id="menu">
  <li>Apples</li>
  <li>Bananas</li>
  <li>Lemons</li>
  <li>Oranges</li>
</ul>

</body>
</html>

Try it Yourself »

With a little extra style, you can make it look like a menu:

New Style:

ul#menu {
    padding: 0;
}

ul#menu li {
    display: inline;
}

ul#menu li a {
    background-color: black;
    color: white;
    padding: 10px 20px;
    text-decoration: none;
    border-radius: 4px 4px 0 0;
}

ul#menu li a:hover {
    background-color: orange;
}

Try it Yourself »


Chapter Summary

  • Use the HTML <ul> element to define an unordered list
  • Use the HTML style attribute to define the bullet style
  • Use the HTML <ol> element to define an ordered list
  • Use the HTML type attribute to define the numbering type
  • Use the HTML <li> element to define a list item
  • Use the HTML <dl> element to define a description list
  • Use the HTML <dt> element to define the description term
  • Use the HTML <dd> element to define the description data
  • Lists can be nested inside lists
  • List items can contain other HTML elements
  • Use the CSS property display:inline to display a list horizontally

Examples

Try it Yourself Summary

An Unordered HTML List

An Unordered HTML List with Disc Bullets

An Unordered HTML List with Circle Bullets

An Unordered HTML List with Square Bullets

An Unordered HTML List Without Bullets

An Ordered HTML List

An Ordered HTML List with Numbers

An Ordered HTML List with Letters

An Ordered HTML List with Lowercase Letters

An Ordered HTML List with Roman Numbers

An Ordered HTML List with Lowercase Roman Numbers

A Description List

A Nested HTML List

A Nested HTML List 2

A Horizontal List

A Horizontal Menu List


Test Yourself Exercises

Exercise 1 »    Exercise 2 »    Exercise 3 »    Exercise 4 »    Exercise 5 »    Exercise 6 »


HTML List Tags

Tag Description
<ul> Defines an unordered list
<ol> Defines an ordered list
<li> Defines a list item
<dl> Defines a description list
<dt> Defines the term in a description list
<dd> Defines the description in a description list



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