HTML Lists – CSS Styling Lists

Lists are used to group similar data together so that it becomes easy to retrieve the relevant data. HTML Lists contain list items that can be ordered or unordered, based on the developer’s necessity. For example, books list, list of students in a class, etc.

In HTML, there are three ways of creating a list-

1. Unordered List – The items are sequenced using bullets(by default). It is specified using the <ul> tag, followed by <li>
2. Ordered List – The items are sequenced using numbers. It is specified using the <ol> tag, followed by <li>
3. Description List – These are the lists containing definition terms followed by their definition. These are specified using the <dl> tag followed by <dt> and <dd>.

html lists

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Advantages of Lists in HTML5

1. Proper semantics of an HTML document are maintained using an HTML list. It removes the confusion since words are not jumbled in a single line and can be easily comprehended.
2. CSS styles can be easily applied to HTML lists, by accessing the <li> tags.
3. HTML lists provide flexibility as the order of the lists can be easily changed.

a. HTML Unordered List

It starts with the <ul> tag and each list item is specified using the <li> tag. By default, the list items start with bullets. For example,
Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ul>
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ul>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html list example

The list item marker can be changed using the CSS property list-style-type

There are four values for list-style-type-

1. disc(default)

List item marker set to bullet.

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ul style="list-style-type: disc;">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ul>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html disc

2. Circle

List item marker displayed as a circle.

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ul style="list-style-type: circle;">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ul>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html circle

3. Square

List item marker displayed as a square.

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ul style="list-style-type: square;">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ul>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html square

4. None

List item marker not displayed.

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ul style="list-style-type: none;">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ul>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html list

HTML Nested Lists

One list can be contained within another. For example,

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ul style="list-style-type: circle;">
   <li>HTML5
      <ul>
         <li>Tables</li>
         <li>Lists</li>
      </ul>
   </li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ul>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html nested list

Navigation Bars using Unordered List in HTML

Unordered lists can be styled using CSS and can be used to create navigation bars. The unordered list is displayed horizontally using the float property of CSS. For example,

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
<style>
ul {
  list-style-type: none;
  margin: 0;
  padding: 0;
  overflow: hidden;
  background-color: #333333;
}

li {
  float: right;
}

li a {
  display: block;
  color: white;
  text-align: center;
  padding: 16px;
  text-decoration: none;
}

</style>
</head>
<body>

<ul>
  <li><a href="#home">Home</a></li>
  <li><a href="#contact">Contact Us</a></li>
  <li><a href="#about">About Us</a></li>
</ul>

</body>
</html>

Output-

html unordered list

b. HTML Ordered List

An ordered list is defined using the <ol> tag followed by <li> tags. The list item marker can be numerical digits or alphabetical.

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ol>
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ol>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html ordered lists

The list-item marker is specified using the type attribute of the <ol> tag. The type attribute can have the following values-

  • type=”1”- List item marker displayed as a number (default).
  • type=”A”- List item marker displayed as an alphabet in uppercase.
  • type=”a”- List item marker displayed as an alphabet in lowercase.
  • type=”Ⅰ”- List item marker displayed as an uppercase roman numeral.
  • type=”i”- List item marker displayed as a lowercase roman numeral.

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ol type="1">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ol>
<ol type="A">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ol>
<ol type="a">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ol>
<ol type="I">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ol>
<ol type="i">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ol>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html ordered list

1. HTML List Counting

Counting of the items of an ordered list, by default, starts from 1. We can change it using the start attribute of the <ol> tag. For example,

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ol start="10">
   <li>HTML5</li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html list counting

2. HTML Nesting Ordered Lists

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<ol>
   <li>HTML5
      <ol>
         <li>Tables</li>
         <li>Lists</li>
      </ol>
   </li>
   <li>CSS3</li>
   <li>JavaScript</li>
   <li>Bootstrap4</li>
</ol>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html nesting ordered list

c. HTML Description List

Description list is specified using the <dl> tag followed by <dt>, definition term, and <dd>, definition, tags. It is used to create lists where information related to each list-item is required. For example,

Code-

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<head>
   <title>DataFlair</title>
</head>
<body>
<h2>Web Development Technologies </h2>
<dl>
  <dt>HTML5</dt>
  <dd>- Used for creating static web-pages.</dd>
  <dt>CSS3</dt>
  <dd>- Used for styling the web-pages.</dd>
</dl>
</body>
</html>

Output-

html description list

Choosing Lists in HTML

  • If in a particular document, name-value pairs are required, it is recommended to select description lists and proceed, else ordered or unordered lists can be used.
  • If the order of the list items is essential, for example, number of students in a class,an ordered list must be used else an unordered list would also suffice.

Summary

HTML Lists are useful for grouping similar data together that helps in easy retrieval and makes the document systematic. In HTML5, lists are of three types- ordered list, unordered list, and definition list. In this article, we’ve discussed these lists along with their applications and properties in detail. HTML unordered list is specified using the <ul> tag, ordered list using the <ol> tag and definition list using the <dl> tag.

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