What is XHTML?

Extensible hypertext markup language (XHTML) is a markup language that uses formatting based on the extensible markup language (XML), but incorporating the content-displaying function of hypertext markup language (HTML). It has been replaced by HTML5.

  • HTML, which introduced the World Wide Web, is designed to display content.
  • XML is designed to structure, store and transport data (and content).
  • XHTML combines the two to provide an XML-based structure that also displays content on the web.

Following XML guidelines, XHTML was based on HTML 4.0. In fact, according the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), “XHTML is a family of current and future document types and modules that reproduce, subset, and extend HTML 4.” So at its introduction, XHTML was sometimes informally called HTML 5.0.






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