HTML <th> Tag

The HTML <th> tag is used for specifying a header cell (or table header) within a table.

This tag must be nested inside a <tr> tag, which in turn must also be nested correctly. You can find out more by viewing the <table> tag specifications.

Also see the <td> tag for declaring table data.


Attributes can be added to an HTML element to provide more information about how the element should appear or behave.

The <th> element accepts the following attributes.

colspanSpecifies the number of columns the current cell spans across.
rowspanSpecifies the number of rows the current cell spans across.
headersSpecifies a space-separated list of header cells that contain information about this cell. The value needs to correspond with the id of the header cell (which is set using the id attribute). This attribute is useful for non-visual browsers.
scopeThis attribute is used on header cells and specifies the cells that will use this header's information.

Possible values:

  • row (current row)
  • col (current column)
  • rowgroup (current rowgroup)
  • colgroup (current column group)
abbrSpecifies an alternative label for the header cell. For example, this could be an abbreviated form of the full header cell, an expansion, or different phrasing.

Global Attributes

The following attributes are standard across all HTML elements. Therefore, you can use these attributes with the <th> tag , as well as with all other HTML tags.

For a full explanation of these attributes, see HTML 5 global attributes.

Event Handlers

Event handler content attributes enable you to invoke a script from within your HTML. The script is invoked when a certain "event" occurs. Each event handler content attribute deals with a different event.

Most event handler content attributes can be used on all HTML elements, but some event handlers have specific rules around when they can be used and which elements they are applicable to.

For more detail, see HTML event handler content attributes.