XMDP for POSH figure markup

In “Marking up figures,” I wrote up my technique for marking up captioned illustrations in HTML. I’ve since updated my approach. This profile captures the semantics of my current figure markup.

While heavily influenced by the <figure> elements of HTML 5, RFC 2629, and its unofficial successor, the content model of the figure defined here is more liberal. I intend to converge toward HTML 5’s <figure> over time.

The key words “MUST”, “MUST NOT”, “REQUIRED”, “SHALL”, “SHALL NOT”, “SHOULD”, “SHOULD NOT”, “RECOMMENDED”, “MAY”, and “OPTIONAL” in this document are to be interpreted as described in RFC 2119.


HTML4 definition of the class attribute. This meta data profile defines some class attribute values (class names) and their meanings as suggested by a draft of “Hypertext Links in HTML”.


An inset or stand-alone figure marked alternate may be presented in a way distinct from its ordinary presentation. For instance, if inset figures are typically positioned on the right of a document, an inset alternate figure could be positioned on the left.


A <pre> element with a class of artwork represents a piece of ASCII art, per the definition of the <artwork> element in RFC 2629.


This element’s textContent serves as the caption for the figure.


Per Paul Wilkins’ definition, a cutout is a figure which should not be set off from the surrounding document by the use of a distinct background or border.


This element represents a figure, which consists of content with associated metadata. A figure may have a preamble, must have content, should have a caption, and may have a postamble.

There are several kinds of figure content:

When a figure’s content consists of more than one embedded content element, they must be grouped together under a common parent element.


Per Paul Wilkins’ definition, an inset is a figure which is positioned within the page’s content such that content flows around it.

Contrasts with stand-alone. An inset figure must not also be stand-alone.


Per RFC 2629, a figure’s preamble is a run of text above the figure’s content. If present, a preamble must appear before the figure’s content in source order.


Per RFC 2629, a figure’s postamble is a run of text below the figure’s content. If present, a postamble must appear after the figure’s content in source order.


A stand-alone figure is one around which page content shouldn’t flow.

Contrasts with inset. A stand-alone figure must not also be inset.



Publication of “Figure markup redux.” Initial publication of this XMDP profile.


Publication of “Marking up figures.”

This work is in the public domain.