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Multiline text input

This element is used within forms to denote an input field that is capable of accepting more than one line of text.

<textarea
    accesskey="character"
    class="class name(s)"
    cols="number"
    dir="ltr | rtl"
    disabled
    id="unique identifier"
    lang="language code"
    name="identifier"
    readonly
    rows="number"
    style="style information"
    tabindex"number"
    title="text"
>
</textarea>

Key:
‡ = Required attribute
** = Transitional only

Explanation of attributes

accesskey: used to define a key on the keyboard that can be used to select this element. This generally depends on the browser and operating system being used.

class: used to state which class(es) the element belongs to. It is possible to indicate more than one class for an element by separating each class name with a space character. This attribute is normally used in combination with a stylesheet in order to associate the elements with particular styles defined within the stylesheet.

cols: used to specify the number of columns that should make up the width of the input field. This is usually defaulted to around 20 when no value is specified.

dir: used to set the direction of the text in combination with the language set in the lang attribute. The available values are "ltr" (left to right) and "rtl" (right to left), with the default value being "ltr".

disabled: this attribute is used to disable a form input. This means that it cannot be selected by the user, and when the form is submitted the value of this field will not be sent to the server.

id: used to specify a unique alphanumeric identifier to the element. This is usually used in combination with stylesheets in order to apply a style to one particular instance of an element. Only one element, regardless of type, can be given a particular id.

lang: used to indicate the language being used in the text contained within the element. The value of this attribute takes on the form of the ISO standard lanuage abbreviations found in RFC 3066. A list of these codes can be found on the ISO language codes page.

name: this attribute is used to identify the form field. The value of this attribute is typically used by the processing script when the form is submitted.

readonly: used to indicate that the value of the input control should not be editable. The value of this field is, unlike with disabled fields, still passed to the processing script upon a submit action.

rows: used to indicate the number of lines of text should make up the height of the field.

style: used to specify an inline style to apply to the element. The styles defined here override the styles declared in the header section.

tabindex: used to define the elements position in the tabbing order of the document. This attribute contains a number, which a traversed in order by using the TAB key.

title: used to define an advisory text that may be displayed as a tooltip when a mouse is used to hover over the element.

Event handlers

The following event handlers are defined for this element:

Basic example

<textarea name="example" cols="25" rows="6">
    This is an example multiline text input.
</textarea>

The above code will display something like:

Compatibility

Description: Support of multiline text input and attributes in various browsers
Test Internet Explorer 6+ Netscape 4 Mozilla and Netscape 6+ Opera 6+ MSN TV (WebTV) Konqeuror 3.0+
Basic element support  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: accesskey  Yes  No  Yes  Yes  No  Yes 
Attribute: class  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: cols  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: dir  Yes  No  No  No  No  No 
Attribute: disabled  Yes  No  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: id  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: lang  Yes  No  No  No  No  No 
Attribute: name  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: readonly  Yes  No  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: rows  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: style  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Attribute: tabindex  Yes  No  Yes  Yes  No  Yes 
Attribute: title  Yes  No  Yes  Yes  No  Yes 

Key:
The browser icons are explained in the below list:
Internet Explorer 6+ = Microsoft Internet Explorer 6+
Netscape 4 = Netscape Communicator 4
Mozilla and Netscape 6+ = Mozilla and Netscape Navigator 6+
Opera 7+ = Opera 7+
MSN TV (WebTV) = MSN TV (aka. WebTV)
Konqeuror 3.0+ = Konqueror 3.0+