I am very new to HTML and CSS but while learning I ran into something that I was curious about. How come when you want to style or change font size etc. you use :.

Example: style="color: red; font-size: 50px".

But when you want to link to let's say your stylesheet you use =.

Example: link type="text/css"; rel="stylesheet"; href="stylesheet.css".

What's the difference? Because basically when you say color: red, your saying you want the color to = red, so why not just use that? This is just a curiosity thing nothing serious but your answers are appreciated.


When you use :, it's CSS. When you use =, it's HTML. It's just two languages with each one has its own different method for assigning attributes (HTML) and properties (CSS).

  • Quick response, Thank you. Also thank you for editing my post I don't know how to make it look like that but I'll figure it out and make sure future post are easier to read. – TheFlyingByrd Feb 18 '14 at 21:29
  • No problem and welcome to Pro Webmasters. – Zistoloen Feb 18 '14 at 21:37
  • 3
    Neither HTML nor CSS has variables; they are not programming languages. HTML has attributes, CSS has properties. But it is indeed a matter of simple syntactic difference between the two languages. – Jukka K. Korpela Feb 18 '14 at 21:44
  • @Jukka K. Korpela: You're right, I have edited my answer. – Zistoloen Feb 19 '14 at 8:38

Each programming language has its syntax.

For HTML, styles' properties are defined by

property_name: property_value 

And also for HTML, markup properties are defined by

markup_name = markup_value

Every Language has its own syntax and structure and in html assignment is done using "=" and in css assignment is done using ":" .


In css

  body {
  background-color: lightblue;

In Html


but in css you can use : for selecting specific element from html


input:checked {
  height: 50px;
  width: 50px;

This css is applied when input is checked

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