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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.

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: 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 value as each of the properties of the shorthand:
Applies to Block containers except table wrapper boxes
Inherited no
Computed value as each of the properties of the shorthand:
Animation type as each of the properties of the shorthand:

Formal syntax

<'column-width'> || <'column-count'>

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 Status Comment
CSS Multi-column Layout Module
The definition of 'columns' in that specification.
Working Draft Initial definition.

Browser compatibilityUpdate compatibility data on GitHub

Desktop
Chrome Edge Firefox Internet Explorer Opera Safari
columns 50
50
50
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
12
12
12
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
52
52
9 — 74
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -moz-
Prior to version 37, multiple columns didn't work with display: table-caption elements.
10 11.1
11.1
15
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
9
9
3
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
Mobile
Android webview Chrome for Android Firefox for Android Opera for Android Safari on iOS Samsung Internet
columns 50
50
2
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
50 52
52
22
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -moz-
Prior to version 37, multiple columns didn't work with display: table-caption elements.
11.1
11.1
14
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
9
9
3.2
Prefixed
Prefixed Implemented with the vendor prefix: -webkit-
5.0

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Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License v2.5 or later.
https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/CSS/columns