The <a> tag allows the user to specify an anchor location within a document. Or more importantly, a reference to another document or location within the current document.
  • (href attribute) a link to another location to another document or a location within the current document
  • (name attribute> a unique name to which other links may reference.
The following element would allow the user to click the title Home and then display the home page for this web site, in the current browser window.
<a href="">Home</a>

The anchor element which has an href attribute, may optionally set the target attribute. The following target names are reserved and have special meanings.

  • "frame name" the name of a frame in which the document specified by the href attribute is to be displayed.
  • _blank The user agent should load the designated document in a new, unnamed window.
  • _self The user agent should load the document in the same frame as the element that refers to this target.
  • _parent The user agent should load the document into the immediate FRAMESET parent of the current frame. This value is equivalent to _self if the current frame has no parent.
  • _top The user agent should load the document into the full, original window (thus canceling all other frames). This value is equivalent to _self if the current frame has no parent.
In the following example, a link anchor and a named anchor are defined. The example allows the user to select the link anchor at the bottom of the page labeled "top of text" which will then position the browser to the named anchor with the name "top-of-text". See the source code, below the example.
To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub;
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause: there's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life;
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely,
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office and the spurns
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscover'd country from whose bourn
No traveler returns, puzzles the will
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all;
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprises of great pith and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry,
And lose the name of action.--Soft you now!
The fair Ophelia! Nymph, in thy orisons
Be all my sins remember'd. top of text
			<a name="top-of-text">
			text here
			<a href="#top-of-text">top of text</a>