float property CSS Reference



Definition and Usage

The float CSS property specifies that an element should be taken from the normal flow and placed along the left or right side of its container, where text and inline elements will wrap around it. A floating element is one where the computed value of float is not none.

  • Initial none
  • Applies to all elements, but has no effect if the value of display is none.
  • Inherited no
  • Media visual
  • Computed Value as specified
  • Animatable no
  • Canonical order the unique non-ambiguous order defined by the formal grammar

As float implicitly implies the use of the block layout, it modifies the computed value of the display values in some cases:

Specified value Computed value
inline block
inline-block block
inline-table table
table-row block
table-row-group block
table-column block
table-column-group block
table-cell block
table-caption block
table-header-group block
table-footer-group block
flex flex, but float has no effect on such elements
inline-flex inline-flex, but float has no effect on such elements
other unchanged

Syntax

Formal syntax: left | right | none
float: left
float: right
float: none
float: inherit

Values

left
Is a keyword indicating that the element must float on the left side of its containing block.
right
Is a keyword indicating that the element must float on the right side of its containing block.
none
Is a keyword indicating that the element must not float.

Examples

<style type="text/css">
div { border: solid red;  max-width: 70ex; }
h4  { float: left;  margin: 0; }
</style>
<div>
<h4>HELLO!</h4>
This is some text. This is some text. This is some text.
This is some text. This is some text. This is some text.
This is some text. This is some text. This is some text.
This is some text. This is some text. This is some text.
</div>
HELLO! This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text. This is some text.

How floats are positioned

As mentioned above, when an element is floated it is taken out of the normal flow of the document. It is shifted to the left or right until it touches the edge of it's containing box or another floated element.In the image below, there are three red squares. Two are floated left and one is floated right. Note that the second "left" red square is placed to the right of the first. Additional squares would continue to stack to the right until they filled the containing box, after which they would wrap to the next line.


Compatibility

Desktop browsers

Feature Chrome Firefox (Gecko) Internet Explorer Opera Safari
Basic support 1.0 1.0 (1.7 or earlier) 4.0 7.0 1.0

Mobile browsers

Feature Android Firefox Mobile (Gecko) IE Phone Opera Mobile Safari Mobile
Basic support 1.0 1.0 (1) 6.0 6.0 1.0

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