initial-letter

The initial-letter CSS property sets styling for dropped, raised, and sunken initial letters.

/* Keyword values */
initial-letter: normal;

/* Numeric values */
initial-letter: 1.5;    /* Initial letter occupies 1.5 lines */
initial-letter: 3.0;    /* Initial letter occupies 3 lines */
initial-letter: 3.0 2;  /* Initial letter occupies 3 lines and
                           sinks 2 lines */

/* Global values */
initial-letter: inherit;
initial-letter: initial;
initial-letter: unset;

Syntax

The keyword value normal, or a <number> optionally followed by an <integer>.

Values

normal
No special initial-letter effect. Text behaves as normal.
<number>
Defines the size of the initial letter, in terms of how many lines it occupies. Negative values are not allowed.
<integer>
Defines the number of lines the initial letter should sink when the size of it is given. Values must be greater than zero. If omitted, it duplicates the size value, floored to the nearest positive whole number.

Formal definition

Initial valuenormal
Applies to::first-letter pseudo-elements and inline-level first child of a block container
Inheritedno
Computed valueas specified
Animation typediscrete

Formal syntax

normal | [ <number> <integer>? ]

Examples

Setting initial letter size

HTML

<p class="normal">Initial letter is normal</p>
<p class="onefive">Initial letter occupies 1.5 lines</p>
<p class="three">Initial letter occupies 3 lines</p>

CSS

.normal {
  -webkit-initial-letter: normal;
  initial-letter: normal;
}

.onefive {
  -webkit-initial-letter: 1.5;
  initial-letter: 1.5;
}

.three {
  -webkit-initial-letter: 3.0;
  initial-letter: 3.0;
}

Result

Specifications

Specification Status Comment
CSS Inline Layout
The definition of 'initial-letter' in that specification.
Working Draft Initial definition

Browser compatibility

Update compatibility data on GitHub
DesktopMobile
ChromeEdgeFirefoxInternet ExplorerOperaSafariAndroid webviewChrome for AndroidFirefox for AndroidOpera for AndroidSafari on iOSSamsung Internet
initial-letter
Experimental
Chrome No support NoEdge No support NoFirefox No support No
Notes
No support No
Notes
Notes See bug 1223880
IE No support NoOpera No support NoSafari Full support 9WebView Android No support NoChrome Android No support NoFirefox Android No support No
Notes
No support No
Notes
Notes See bug 1223880
Opera Android No support NoSafari iOS Full support 9Samsung Internet Android No support No

Legend

Full support  
Full support
No support  
No support
Experimental. Expect behavior to change in the future.
Experimental. Expect behavior to change in the future.
See implementation notes.
See implementation notes.