Learning HTML 3.2 by Examples, section 5 Descriptions of HTML 3.2 tags:

U - underline (Not in HTML 2.0!)


To underline text.

Typical rendering

Underlined. However, e.g. several versions of Netscape still in use present U elements as normal text. See general notes on rendering markup.

Basic syntax


Possible attributes


Allowed context

Text container, i.e. any element that may contain text elements. This includes most HTML elements. In particular, text elements can be nested.


Text elements. Notice that this disallows e.g. paragraph breaks.


Example U-1.html:

Compare <U>underlined text</U> with normal text.


Avoid using U; use logical markup instead. For example, to emphasize use EM or STRONG. In HTML 4.0, the U element is deprecated .

It is customary to use underlining in typewritten text for various other purposes than emphasis, too, but in HTML it is usually better to use e.g. the I element (to produce italics).

One particular reason for avoiding U is that typically Web browsers present links using underlining (instead of or in addition to other methods such as different color). Therefore, if you use U elements, the reader may have serious difficulties in distinguishing them from links.

The HTML 2.0 specification does not include U but mentions it as an element which has been "deployed to some extent".

See general notes on text markup, which provide additional examples.

Date of last update: 2010-12-16.
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