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HTML lists: ordered, unordered, and definition

Lists are very important to any document as they allow you to make your key points stand out from the rest of the text. HTML supports three lists:

Unordered (bulleted) list

The most commonly used list is the unordered list. An unordered list can be used whenever the order of items you want to list is unimportant. HTML offers three different default characters to use with an unordered list: a bullet (), a circle (), and a square (). The following shows examples of an unordered list:

Unordered list — type bullet (default)

Unordered list — type bullet (default)

Unordered list — type circle

Unordered list — type circle

Unordered list — type square

Unordered list — type square

Ordered (numbered) list

The other popular kind of list is the ordered list. This type of list can be used when the order of items to list is important. It could be that you want to list steps to how to cook a recipe; for this kind of list you could use an ordered list because each step can be emphasized numerically. An ordered list can be created with different styles: Arabic numbers, lowercase or uppercase letters, or lowercase or uppercase Roman numerals. The following shows examples for each of these styles:

Ordered list style: Arabic numbers (default)

Ordered list style: Arabic numbers (default)

Ordered list style: lowercase letters

Ordered list style: lowercase letters

Ordered list style: uppercase letters

Ordered list style: uppercase letters

Ordered list style: lowercase Roman numerals

Ordered list style: lowercase Roman numerals

Ordered list style: uppercase Roman numerals

Ordered list style: uppercase Roman numerals

Definition list

The definition list is used far less frequently than the other two kinds of lists mentioned above. A definition list, as the name implies, is used for listing definitions:

An example of a definition list

Click here to learn how to create a definition list.

Nested lists

Sometimes, a list is long and may require subordinate lists. Mastering multiple lists within a single list is easy once you learn how to create a single list. (See this page to learn how to create nested lists.) The following shows an example of a nested list:

An example showing nested list
An example showing nested list