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HTML <p> Tag

Topic: HTML5 Tags ReferencePrev|Next


The <p> tag defines a paragraph. The <p> element is the most commonly used block-level element. However, it cannot contain block-level elements (including <p> itself).

The following table summarizes the usages context and the version history of this tag.

Placement: Block
Content: Inline and text
Start/End Tag: Start tag: required, End tag: optional
Version: HTML 2, 3.2, 4, 4.01, 5

Usage Notes

  • As a logical element, empty paragraphs are ignored by the browsers, so do not use empty <p> elements to add blank lines in your web pages. To create blank lines use the <br> tag, or use the CSS margin property instead.

  • When you use the <p> element to begin a paragraph, it automatically creates some space (margin) above and below the content. This space is applied by the browser's built-in style sheets, but you can override it using CSS margin property.


The basic syntax of the <p> tag is given with:

HTML / XHTML: <p> ... </p>

The example below shows the <p> tag in action.

<p>This is a paragraph.</p>
<p>This is another paragraph.</p>

Note: In HTML, the end tag for the <p> element may be omitted. In XHTML, the <p> tag must be properly closed i.e. both start tag and end tag are required.

Tag-Specific Attributes

The following table shows the attributes that are specific to the <p> tag.

Attribute Value Description
align left
Obsolete Specifies the horizontal alignment of the text within a paragraph. Use the CSS text-align property instead.

Global Attributes

Like all other HTML tags, the <p> tag supports the global attributes in HTML5.

Event Attributes

The <p> tag also supports the event attributes in HTML5.

Browser Compatibility

The <p> tag is supported in all major modern browsers.

Browsers Icon

Basic Support—

  • Firefox 1+
  • Google Chrome 1+
  • Internet Explorer 2+
  • Apple Safari 1+
  • Opera 2.1+

Further Reading

See tutorial on: CSS Alignment.

Related tags: <h1> - <h6>, <div>.

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