html tutorial - Meta <meta> tag in HTML - html5 - html code - html form

  • The <meta> tag specifies metadata about the document.
  • Metadata is not displayed on the HTML document, but the search engine can read the meta information that will be in machine parsable.
  • Meta elements are usually used to define
    • page description
    • keywords
    • author of the document
    • last modified
    • other metadata.
  • The <meta> tag belongs to metadata content Category.
  • The <meta> tag supports Global Attributes and Event Attributes.

Syntax for <meta> tag in HTML:

<meta name = “meta name “ content = “name attribute value” >

Differences Between HTML 4.01 and HTML5 for <meta> tag in HTML:

HTML 4.01

  • In HTML 4 the declaration of the charset is <meta http-equiv="content-type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8">


  • The scheme attribute is not supported.
  • The charset is a new attribute.
  • When compare with HTML 4 easy to specify charset in HTML 5 <meta charset="UTF-8">

Sample Coding for <meta> tag in HTML:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html >
        <meta charset="UTF-8">
        <meta name="description" content="Wikitechy a community of Developers and 
        IT Professional">

Code Explanation for <meta> tag in HTML:

code explanation for <meta> tag

  1. <meta> tag defines metadata about an HTML document.
  2. charset is an attribute, which specifies the character encoding of the document.
  3. name is an attribute, which is used to define the name of the metadata. name attribute has some predefined values such as description, keywords, application-name, etc.
  4. content is an attribute, which is used to describe the value of the name attribute.

Attributes of <meta> tag in HTML:

Attribute Value HTML4 HTML5 Description
content text Yes Yes Provides the value associated with the http-equiv or name attribute.
htttp-equiv content-type
Yes Yes Gives an HTTP header for the information/value of the content attribute.
name application-name
Yes Yes Describes the metadata name.
charset character_set Yes Yes Defines the character encoding for the HTML document.
scheme format/URI Yes No Defines a scheme to be used to explain the value of the content attribute.

Browser Support for <meta> tag in HTML:

Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Tips and Notes

  • The <meta> tags always push inside the <head> element.
  • Metadata will always passed as name/value pairs.
  • The content attribute must be specified if the name or the http-equiv attribute is specifies.

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