The HTML <li> element is used to represent an item in a list. It must be contained in a parent element: an ordered list (<ol>), an unordered list (<ul>), or a menu (<menu>). In menus and unordered lists, list items are usually displayed using bullet points. In ordered lists, they are usually displayed with an ascending counter on the left, such as a number or letter.

Content categories None.
Permitted content Flow content.
Tag omission The end tag can be omitted if the list item is immediately followed by another <li> element, or if there is no more content in its parent element.
Permitted parents An <ul>, <ol>, or <menu> element. Though not a conforming usage, the obsolete <dir> can also be a parent.
Permitted ARIA roles menuitem, menuitemcheckbox, menuitemradio, option, presentation, radio, separator, tab, treeitem
DOM interface HTMLLIElement


This element includes the global attributes.

This integer attribute indicates the current ordinal value of the list item as defined by the <ol> element. The only allowed value for this attribute is a number, even if the list is displayed with Roman numerals or letters. List items that follow this one continue numbering from the value set. The value attribute has no meaning for unordered lists (<ul>) or for menus (<menu>).
Note: This attribute was deprecated in HTML4, but reintroduced in HTML5.

Note: Prior to Gecko 9.0, negative values were incorrectly converted to 0. Starting in Gecko 9.0 all integer values are correctly parsed.

This character attribute indicates the numbering type:
  • a: lowercase letters
  • A: uppercase letters
  • i: lowercase Roman numerals
  • I: uppercase Roman numerals
  • 1: numbers
This type overrides the one used by its parent <ol> element, if any.
Usage note: This attribute has been deprecated: use the CSS list-style-type property instead.


    <li>first item</li>
    <li>second item</li>
    <li>third item</li>

The above HTML will output:

  1. first item
  2. second item
  3. third item
<ol type="I">
    <li value="3">third item</li>
    <li>fourth item</li>
    <li>fifth item</li>

The above HTML will output:

  1. third item
  2. fourth item
  3. fifth item
    <li>first item</li>
    <li>second item</li>
    <li>third item</li>
  • first item
  • second item
  • third item

For more detailed examples, see the <ol> and <ul> pages.


Specification Status Comment
HTML Living Standard
The definition of '<li>' in that specification.
Living Standard  
The definition of '<li>' in that specification.
HTML 4.01 Specification
The definition of '<li>' in that specification.
Recommendation The type attribute has been deprecated.

Browser compatibility

FeatureChromeEdgeFirefoxInternet ExplorerOperaSafari
Basic Support (Yes) (Yes)1 (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)
value (Yes) (Yes)1 (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)
type (Yes) (Yes)1 (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)
FeatureAndroidChrome for AndroidEdge mobileFirefox for AndroidIE mobileOpera AndroidiOS Safari
Basic Support (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)1 (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)
value (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)1 (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)
type (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)1 (Yes) (Yes) (Yes)

See also

  • Other list-related HTML Elements: <ul>, <li>, <menu>, and the obsolete <dir>;
  • CSS properties that may be specially useful to style the <li> element:
    • the list-style property, to choose the way the ordinal is displayed,
    • CSS counters, to handle complex nested lists,
    • the margin property, to control the indent of the list item.

Document Tags and Contributors

 Last updated by: teoli,