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Pattern Library

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This document is a guide to the mark-up styles used as basic content.

Second-Level heading

The title of this page uses a h1 element. This is the Title field in the DRUPAL backend

The secondary heading above uses a h2 element, which may be used for any form of important page-level heading. More than one may be used per page. Consider using a h2 unless you need a heading of less importance, or as a sub-heading to an existing h2 element.

Third-Level Heading

The heading above uses a h3 element, which may be used for any form of page-level heading which falls below h2 in the document hierarchy.

The heading above uses a h6 element, which may be used for any form of page-level heading which falls below h5 in the document hierarchy.

Grouping content


All paragraphs are wrapped in ptags.

Horizontal rule

The hr element represents a paragraph-level thematic break, e.g. a scene change in a story, or a transition to another topic within a section of a reference book. The following extract from Pandora’s Star by Peter F. Hamilton shows two paragraphs that precede a scene change and the paragraph that follows it:

Dudley was ninety-two, in his second life, and fast approaching time for another rejuvenation. Despite his body having the physical age of a standard fifty-year-old, the prospect of a long degrading campaign within academia was one he regarded with dread. For a supposedly advanced civilization, the Intersolar Commonwearth could be appallingly backward at times, not to mention cruel.

Maybe it won’t be that bad, he told himself. The lie was comforting enough to get him through the rest of the night’s shift.

The Carlton AllLander drove Dudley home just after dawn. Like the astronomer, the vehicle was old and worn, but perfectly capable of doing its job. It had a cheap diesel engine, common enough on a semi-frontier world like Gralmond, although its drive array was a thoroughly modern photoneural processor. With its high suspension and deep-tread tyres it could plough along the dirt track to the observatory in all weather and seasons, including the metre-deep snow of Gralmond’s winters.


Ordered list

The ol element denotes an ordered list, and various numbering schemes are available through the CSS (including 1,2,3… a,b,c… i,ii,iii… and so on). Each item requires a surrounding <li> and </li> tag, to denote individual items within the list (as you may have guessed, li stands for list item).

  1. This is an ordered list.
  2. This is the second item, which contains a sub list
    1. This is the sub list, which is also ordered.
    2. It has two items.
  3. This is the final item on this list.

Unordered list

The ul element denotes an unordered list (ie. a list of loose items that don’t require numbering, or a bulleted list). Again, each item requires a surrounding <li> and </li> tag, to denote individual items. Here is an example list showing the constituent parts of the British Isles:

  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland:
    • England
    • Scotland
    • Wales
    • Northern Ireland
  • Republic of Ireland
  • Isle of Man
  • Channel Islands:
    • Bailiwick of Guernsey
    • Bailiwick of Jersey

Sometimes we may want each list item to contain block elements, typically a paragraph or two.

  • The British Isles is an archipelago consisting of the two large islands of Great Britain and Ireland, and many smaller surrounding islands.

  • Great Britain is the largest island of the archipelago. Ireland is the second largest island of the archipelago and lies directly to the west of Great Britain.

  • The full list of islands in the British Isles includes over 1,000 islands, of which 51 have an area larger than 20 km2.

Definition list

The dl element is for another type of list called a definition list. Instead of list items, the content of a dl consists of dt (Definition Term) and dd ( Definition description) pairs. Though it may be called a “definition list”, dl can apply to other scenarios where a parent/child relationship is applicable. For example, it may be used for marking up dialogues, with each dt naming a speaker, and each dd containing his or her words.

This is a term.
This is the definition of that term, which both live in a dl .
Here is another term.
And it gets a definition too, which is this line.
Here is term that shares a definition with the term below.
Here is a defined term.
dt terms may stand on their own without an accompanying dd , but in that case they share descriptions with the next available dt . You may not have a dd without a parent dt .

Figures & Images


For images that are decorative and have no semantic meaning you can just use the "<img>"

Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Vestibulum tortor quam, feugiat vitae, ultricies eget, tempor sit amet, ante. Donec eu libero sit amet quam egestas semper. Aenean ultricies mi vitae est. Mauris placerat eleifend leo.

Figures are usually used to refer to images with captions however they can be use for any illustrative content, blockquotes, sections of text from other sources:

Simple image and caption

test inline image
This is the image caption

Figure Heading

This is a placeholder image, with supporting caption.


The blockquote element is now recomended to be place in a figure.

It is the unofficial force—the Baker Street irregulars.

What a bunch of maroons.

Sherlock Holmes, Sign of Four

Text-level Semantics

There are a number of inline HTML elements you may use anywhere within other elements.

Links and anchors

The a element is used to hyperlink text, be that to another page, a named fragment on the current page or any other location on the web. Example:

Go to the home page or return to the top of this page.

Stressed emphasis

The em element is used to denote text with stressed emphasis, i.e., something you’d pronounce differently. Where italicizing is required for stylistic differentiation, the i element may be preferable. Example:

You simply must try the negitoro maki!

Strong importance

The strong element is used to denote text with strong importance. Where bolding is used for stylistic differentiation, the b element may be preferable. Example:

Don’t stick nails in the electrical outlet.

Small print

The small element is used to represent disclaimers, caveats, legal restrictions, or copyrights (commonly referred to as ‘small print’). It can also be used for attributions or satisfying licensing requirements. Example:

Copyright © 1922-2011 Acme Corporation. All Rights Reserved.


The cite element is used to represent the title of a work (e.g. a book, essay, poem, song, film, TV show, sculpture, painting, musical, exhibition, etc). This can be a work that is being quoted or referenced in detail (i.e. a citation), or it can just be a work that is mentioned in passing. Example:

Universal Declaration of Human Rights, United Nations, December 1948. Adopted by General Assembly resolution 217 A (III).

Inline quotes

The q element is used for quoting text inline. Example showing nested quotations:

John said, I saw Lucy at lunch, she told me Mary wants you to get some ice cream on your way home. I think I will get some at Ben and Jerry’s, on Gloucester Road.


The time element is used to represent either a time on a 24 hour clock, or a precise date in the proleptic Gregorian calendar, optionally with a time and a time-zone offset. Example:

Queen Elizabeth II was proclaimed sovereign of each of the Commonwealth realms on

6 and 7 February 1952, after the death of her father, King George VI.


These require special markup with classes around them so use the advanced mark up section

Error message

warning message

ok message


Tables should be used when displaying tabular data. The thead , tfoot and tbody elements enable you to group rows within each a table.

If you use these elements, you must use every element. They should appear in this order: thead , tfoot and tbody , so that browsers can render the foot before receiving all the data. You must use these tags within the table element.

If you need to use scope="col" use the advanced mark up section

The Very Best Eggnog
Ingredients Serves 12 Serves 24
Milk 1 quart 2 quart
Cinnamon Sticks 2 1
Vanilla Bean, Split 1 2
Cloves 5 10
Mace 10 blades 20 blades
Egg Yolks 12 24
Cups Sugar 1 ½ cups 3 cups
Dark Rum 1 ½ cups 3 cups
Brandy 1 ½ cups 3 cups
Vanilla 1 tbsp 2 tbsp
Half-and-half or Light Cream 1 quart 2 quart
Freshly grated nutmeg to taste    

Based on Robert Paul Lloyd's style guide, of which parts of this markup guide attributable to Dave Shea, and licensed under a Creative Commons License.

this is a default quote

quote 1 citation

quote style 2

quote 2 citation


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