columns

The columns CSS shorthand property sets the number of columns to use when drawing an element's contents, as well as those columns' widths.

Try it

Constituent properties

This property is a shorthand for the following CSS properties:

Syntax

/* Column width */
columns: 18em;

/* Column count */
columns: auto;
columns: 2;

/* Both column width and count */
columns: 2 auto;
columns: auto 12em;
columns: auto auto;

/* Global values */
columns: inherit;
columns: initial;
columns: revert;
columns: revert-layer;
columns: unset;

The columns property may be specified as one or two of the values listed below, in any order.

Values

<'column-width'>

The ideal column width, defined as a <length> or the keyword auto. The actual width may be wider or narrower to fit the available space. See column-width.

<'column-count'>

The ideal number of columns into which the element's content should be flowed, defined as an <integer> or the keyword auto. If neither this value nor the column's width are auto, it merely indicates the maximum allowable number of columns. See column-count.

Formal definition

Initial valueas each of the properties of the shorthand:
Applies toBlock containers except table wrapper boxes
Inheritedno
Computed valueas each of the properties of the shorthand:
Animation typeas each of the properties of the shorthand:

Formal syntax

Examples

Setting three equal columns

HTML

<p class="content-box">
  This is a bunch of text split into three columns
  using the CSS `columns` property. The text
  is equally distributed over the columns.
</p>

CSS

.content-box {
  columns: 3 auto;
}

Result

Specifications

Specification
CSS Multi-column Layout Module Level 2
# columns

Browser compatibility

BCD tables only load in the browser

See also