Published Mar 9, 2023
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The HTML global dir attribute sets the direction of an HTML element‘s text. This is useful for languages that use right-to-left scripts like Adlam, Arabic, Dhivehi, Hebrew, Mandinka, N’Ko, Pashto, Persian, Pular, Sindhi, Syriac, Thaana, Urdu, Yiddish, etc.


<element  dir="direction">

dir can be set to the following values:

Direction Description
ltr Default left-to-right text direction, i.e., English.
rtl Right-to-left text direction, i.e., Arabic.
auto The browser figures out the text direction based on the content (only recommended if the text direction is unknown).

Note: Always declare the language using the lang attribute in conjunction with setting the text direction with the dir attribute. Language declarations do not imply directionality or vice versa. The two must be set separately.

Example 1

The following example sets the dir attribute on a <p> element to rtl:

<p dir="rtl">
This paragraph is in English but incorrectly goes right to left.

This results in the following output:

Incorrect use of dir attribute

Note: The punctuation mark, ., is placed at the front of the sentence when using rtl direction. The LRM control character &lrm; can be placed at the end of the sentence to display the punctuation as if the text is left-to-right.

Example 2

The following example sets the dir attribute on a <p> element to ltr:

<p dir="ltr">This paragraph is in English and correctly goes left to right.</p>

This results in the following output:

Correct use of dir attribute

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