white-space

The white-space CSS property sets how white space inside an element is handled.

Note: To make words break within themselves, use overflow-wrap, word-break, or hyphens instead.

Syntax

/* Keyword values */
white-space: normal;
white-space: nowrap;
white-space: pre;
white-space: pre-wrap;
white-space: pre-line;
white-space: break-spaces;

/* Global values */
white-space: inherit;
white-space: initial;
white-space: unset;

The white-space property is specified as a single keyword chosen from the list of values below.

Values

normal
Sequences of white space are collapsed. Newline characters in the source are handled the same as other white space. Lines are broken as necessary to fill line boxes.
nowrap
Collapses white space as for normal, but suppresses line breaks (text wrapping) within the source.
pre
Sequences of white space are preserved. Lines are only broken at newline characters in the source and at <br> elements.
pre-wrap
Sequences of white space are preserved. Lines are broken at newline characters, at <br>, and as necessary to fill line boxes.
pre-line
Sequences of white space are collapsed. Lines are broken at newline characters, at <br>, and as necessary to fill line boxes.
break-spaces
The behavior is identical to that of pre-wrap, except that:
  • Any sequence of preserved white space always takes up space, including at the end of the line.
  • A line breaking opportunity exists after every preserved white space character, including between white space characters.
  • Such preserved spaces take up space and do not hang, and thus affect the box’s intrinsic sizes (min-content size and max-content size).

The following table summarizes the behavior of the various white-space values:

New lines Spaces and tabs Text wrapping End-of-line spaces
normal Collapse Collapse Wrap Remove
nowrap Collapse Collapse No wrap Remove
pre Preserve Preserve No wrap Preserve
pre-wrap Preserve Preserve Wrap Hang
pre-line Preserve Collapse Wrap Remove
break-spaces Preserve Preserve Wrap Wrap

Formal definition

Initial valuenormal
Applies toall elements
Inheritedyes
Computed valueas specified
Animation typediscrete

Formal syntax

normal | pre | nowrap | pre-wrap | pre-line | break-spaces

Examples

Basic example

code { 
  white-space: pre; 
}

Line breaks inside <pre> elements

pre {
  word-wrap: break-word;      /* IE 5.5-7 */
  white-space: pre-wrap;      /* Modern browsers */
}

In action

HTML

<p> Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.</p> 

Result

Specifications

Specification Status Comment
CSS Text Module Level 3
The definition of 'white-space' in that specification.
Working Draft Precisely defines the breaking algorithms.
CSS Level 2 (Revision 1)
The definition of 'white-space' in that specification.
Recommendation Initial definition.

Browser compatibility

Update compatibility data on GitHub
DesktopMobile
ChromeEdgeFirefoxInternet ExplorerOperaSafariAndroid webviewChrome for AndroidFirefox for AndroidOpera for AndroidSafari on iOSSamsung Internet
white-spaceChrome Full support 1Edge Full support 12Firefox Full support 1IE Full support 5.5Opera Full support 4Safari Full support 1WebView Android Full support 1Chrome Android Full support 18Firefox Android Full support 4Opera Android Full support 10.1Safari iOS Full support 1Samsung Internet Android Full support 1.0
break-spacesChrome Full support 76Edge Full support 79Firefox Full support 69IE No support NoOpera Full support 62Safari Full support 13.1WebView Android Full support 76Chrome Android Full support 76Firefox Android No support NoOpera Android Full support 54Safari iOS Full support 13.4Samsung Internet Android Full support 12.0
nowrapChrome Full support 1Edge Full support 12Firefox Full support 1IE Full support 5.5Opera Full support 4Safari Full support 1WebView Android Full support 1Chrome Android Full support 18Firefox Android Full support 4Opera Android Full support 10.1Safari iOS Full support 1Samsung Internet Android Full support 1.0
preChrome Full support 1Edge Full support 12Firefox Full support 1IE Full support 6Opera Full support 4Safari Full support 1WebView Android Full support 37Chrome Android Full support 18Firefox Android Full support 4Opera Android Full support 14Safari iOS Full support 1Samsung Internet Android Full support 1.0
pre-lineChrome Full support 1Edge Full support 12Firefox Full support 3.5IE Full support 8Opera Full support 9.5Safari Full support 3WebView Android Full support 37Chrome Android Full support 18Firefox Android Full support 4Opera Android Full support 14Safari iOS Full support 1Samsung Internet Android Full support 1.0
pre-wrapChrome Full support 1Edge Full support 12Firefox Full support 3
Full support 3
No support 1 — 3.6
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -moz-
IE Full support 8
Notes
Full support 8
Notes
Notes From Internet Explorer 5.5 to 7, word-wrap: break-word; can be used for line breaks in pre elements.
Opera Full support 8Safari Full support 3WebView Android Full support 37Chrome Android Full support 18Firefox Android Full support 4Opera Android Full support 14Safari iOS Full support 1Samsung Internet Android Full support 1.0
Support in SVGChrome No support NoEdge No support 12 — 79Firefox Full support 36IE Full support 10Opera No support NoSafari No support NoWebView Android No support NoChrome Android No support NoFirefox Android Full support 36Opera Android No support NoSafari iOS No support NoSamsung Internet Android No support No
Support on <textarea>Chrome Full support 1Edge Full support 12Firefox Full support 36IE Full support 5.5Opera Full support 4Safari Full support 1WebView Android Full support 37Chrome Android Full support 18Firefox Android Full support 36Opera Android Full support 14Safari iOS Full support 1Samsung Internet Android Full support 1.0

Legend

Full support  
Full support
No support  
No support
See implementation notes.
See implementation notes.
Requires a vendor prefix or different name for use.
Requires a vendor prefix or different name for use.

See also