Can’t Center Cite Element Css

CSS Programming

So, I recently encountered a frustrating CSS challenge: centering a cite element. As a web developer, I understand the importance of precision in design, and this seemingly simple task turned out to be quite tricky. Let me walk you through the process and the solution I found.

The Challenge

The cite element is commonly used to mark up the title of a work, such as a book or a song. It’s essential to style this element properly, and one common requirement is to center it within its parent container. However, unlike other elements, the cite element does not inherit the default text-align: center property from its parent.

My Initial Attempts

In my first attempt, I used the traditional method of setting text-align: center on the parent container. To my surprise, this didn’t work! I then experimented with different combinations of CSS properties, such as setting the display property to block and the margin property to auto, but still, no luck.

The Solution

After some research and trial and error, I discovered the solution. The key is to treat the cite element as an inline-block element and then use the text-align: center property on its parent. This combination effectively centers the cite element horizontally within its container.

Here’s the CSS code that did the trick:

parent-container {
  text-align: center;

cite {
  display: inline-block;

Why It Works

By setting the cite element to display: inline-block, we make it obey the text-align: center property of its parent. This allows the content of the cite element to be centered horizontally without affecting the layout of surrounding elements.


In conclusion, the frustration of not being able to center a cite element with CSS turned into a valuable learning experience. Understanding how different CSS properties interact is crucial in overcoming such challenges. I hope this insight helps you in your own coding endeavors!