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HTML HTML Tables HTML Tables

How come my colspan is not working?

<table border="1"> <thead> <tr> <th>Author(s)</th> <th>Book Title</th> </tr> </thead> <tfoot> <tr> <td colspan="2"align="center"> thanks </td> </tr> </tfoot> <tbody> <tr> <td>John Steinbeck</td> <td>The Grapes of Wrath</td> </tr> </tbody> </table>

Can we see your code?

2 Answers

Alessandra Vaughn
Alessandra Vaughn
13,915 Points

I find the easiest way to troubleshoot with tables is to add a border.

<table border="1">

A COLSPAN is an attribute for the TH and TD tags, both part of the overall TABLE tag. The tricky thing about tables is that if opening and closing tags are not matching, then the table won't look like it should. Also, make sure number of TD tags match (with the exception of those using COLSPAN and/or ROWSPAN attributes) from beginning to end. If you have any empty table cells, then putting   (non-breaking space) in them will keep the cells looking consistent.

Here's some example code which you can save as an HTML file and preview in a browser. Just remember it's not valid HTML5.

    <title>Example Table</title>
      table, th, td { border: 1px solid gray; }
    <table border="1" width="100%" cellspacing="0">
        <!-- 1 td tag as colspan = 3 -->
      <tr bgcolor="blue"><td colspan="3">&nbsp;</tr>
        <!-- 2 td tags as colspan = 2 -->
      <tr><td colspan="2" bgcolor="red">&nbsp;</td>       
      <td rowspan="2" bgcolor="yellow">&nbsp;</td></tr>
        <!-- 2 td tags as rowspan from above = 2 -->
      <tr><td bgcolor="green">&nbsp;</td><td bgcolor="lime">&nbsp;</td></tr>
        <!-- 3 td tags as no colspan on line or any intercepted rowspan from above -->
      <tr><td bgcolor="teal">&nbsp;</td><td bgcolor="orange">&nbsp;</td>
      <td bgcolor="black">&nbsp;</td></tr>