<span>: The Content Span element

The <span> HTML element is a generic inline container for phrasing content, which does not inherently represent anything. It can be used to group elements for styling purposes (using the class or id attributes), or because they share attribute values, such as lang. It should be used only when no other semantic element is appropriate. <span> is very much like a <div> element, but <div> is a block-level element whereas a <span> is an inline element.

Content categories Flow content, phrasing content.
Permitted content Phrasing content.
Tag omission None, both the starting and ending tag are mandatory.
Permitted parents Any element that accepts phrasing content, or any element that accepts flow content.
Implicit ARIA role No corresponding role
Permitted ARIA roles Any
DOM interface HTMLSpanElement (before HTML5, the interface was HTMLElement)

Attributes

This element only includes the global attributes.

Example

Example 1

HTML

<p><span>Some text</span></p>

Result

Example 2

HTML

<li><span>
    <a href="portfolio.html" target="_blank">See my portfolio</a>
</span></li>

CSS

li span {
  background: gold;
 }

Result

Specifications

Specification
HTML Standard (HTML)
# the-span-element

Browser compatibility

BCD tables only load in the browser

See also