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Tooltips is a script that allows tooltips to be displayed while hovering over certain elements.

Note: Keep your mobile users in mind. Don't use tooltips as the only way to display content. It's best to use them more in form of a quick summary of a term and have all the details on a page.



To make the script show a tooltip when hovered over a specific element you have to add a special class to it. Some types of tooltips also support additional parameters specified via data- attributes (see section Configuration for more).

There are three distinct types of tooltips:

Basic tooltips – class
This type of tooltip will only show the contents of title of this element.
<span class="basic-tooltip" title="Text to show inside tooltip">Basic tooltips</span>
Basic tooltips
Advanced tooltips – class
Contents of this tooltip are taken from inside the element with tooltip-contents class. Contents of the element are taken as rendered. This allow to use wiki markup and HTML elements to format tooltip. Remember that contents of these tooltips are loaded on page load. This can drastically slow down page load times with big amounts of tooltips (including repeated uses of the same one).
<div class="advanced-tooltip" style="display:inline-block">Advanced tooltips<div class="tooltip-contents">Tooltip content<br><code>Including HTML tags</code></div></div>
Advanced tooltips
Tooltip content
Including HTML tags
Advanced tooltips will cause a new line when they're used inline if any of the tooltip content contains a block-level tag (regardless of styles), due to the MediaWiki parser automatically adding <p> tags to the subsequent text. This can be solved by wrapping the entire text in a <span> or <div> to suppress the automatic <p> tag, e.g.
<span>This is an example of <span class="advanced-tooltip">Advanced tooltips<div class="tooltip-contents">Tooltip content</div></span> being used inline.</span>
This is an example of Advanced tooltips
Tooltip content
being used inline.
Custom tooltips – class
your own
This type allows the most control over contents of the tooltip with reduced page load times. You can use templates to generate tooltips and pass parameters to the template through data- attributes of the element you hover over. Its advantage over advanced tooltips is that the content of the tooltip is loaded when needed, and the same tooltip for multiple elements (same parameters) will be loaded once.
<span class="custom-tooltip-text" data-parameter="Some value">Custom tooltips – text</span>
Custom tooltips – text
<span class="custom-tooltip-parse" data-parameter="Some value">Custom tooltips – parse</span>
Custom tooltips – parse


Different types of tooltips can be combined to display them simultaneously. Order of tooltips is same as the order of classes.

<div class="advanced-tooltip basic-tooltip custom-tooltip-parse custom-tooltip-text" data-parameter="Parameter" style="display: inline-block;">Combined tooltips<div class="tooltip-contents">Advanced tooltip</div></div>
Combined tooltips
Advanced tooltip


Without any setup, script will only support basic and advanced tooltips. There are 3 variables that contain config for the script. You can specify them in MediaWiki:Common.js on your wiki.

Main config – tooltips_config

Here you can adjust some core features using this object:

Is a list of JavaScript events of the window object that will trigger the search for tooltips that weren't present when script was initialized. This way you can make tooltips work in custom interface element that are added after the page is loaded and tooltips initialized. For example in a custom right rail module.
If you want to disable import of default CSS, set it to true.
offsetX / offsetY
These are values that the tooltip will be moved right and down (respectively) from where the cursor is pointing (remember that margin of tooltip itself can move it further). Default value is 8 for both and values below 5 are not recommended.
It will alter how tooltips behave when they have images inside. By default (false) tooltips will show up even if images aren't fully loaded yet. Images will eventually show up when they are loaded (lazy loading). Setting this value to true will make the script wait for all images to be fully loaded before showing the tooltip.

Example of the config object:

window.tooltips_config = {
    events: ['CustomEvent'],
    noCSS: true,
    offsetX: 5,
    offsetY: 10,
    waitForImages: true,

Creating custom tooltip types – tooltips_list

You can add your own tooltips to this array. Every type of tooltip is an object with these properties:

CSS class that will trigger the tooltip of this type. This property is required.
This function will be executed when the parsed has been fetched (with the tooltip being its context - this).
Similar to text but the resulting text will be parsed, allowing the use of wiki syntax, at the cost of a short delay.
This string or function will be used as content of the tooltip.

Both text and parse can be either a string or a function.

If the value is a string, you can use parameters that will be taken from the element the cursor is pointing at. To use a parameter, you need to add this in the text: <#parameter-name#>. This tag will be replaced with value of the data-parameter-name attribute of the element. You can use multiple parameters, and one parameter multiple times.

{{Template|<#value#>}}  <!-- <#value#> will be replaced with content of data-value attribute -->

Other way is to specify a function that will be executed whenever a new element without the tooltip is hovered-over. This function has that element as its first argument and should return contents of the tooltip (or wikitext to parse). Returned string doesn't support parameters like above since you can access any attributes yourself (ex: $(elem).data('parameter-name'))

Example of an object with settings for one type of tooltip:

    classname: 'custom-tooltip',
    delay: 500,
    parse: '{'+'{Tooltip|<#name#>|<#value#>}}',   // '+' makes MediaWiki ignore the template on the page with settings

Example of an object with a parse function:

    classname: 'custom-tooltip',
    delay: 500,
    parse: function parse(elem) { return '{'+'{Tooltip|' + $(elem).data('name') + '|' + $(elem).data('value') + '}}' },

Common properties

{These properties can be used for all types, including the built in ones (basic-tooltip and advanced-tooltip):

Just like the name says. It'll make the tooltip appear after the specified delay in milliseconds. Tip: 1 second = 1000 milliseconds.
onShow / onHide
Are pseudo-events that will be triggered (respectively) right after the tooltip is shown and right before it'll be hidden. These are callback functions with the tooltip itself being their context (this) and the hover handle that triggered the tooltip as an argument.

Example of settings for two custom tooltips and modifying behavior of basic tooltips:

window.tooltips_list = [
        classname: 'custom-tooltip-text',
        text: "Parameter: <#parameter#><br>This is just text and HTML - wikitext '''won't''' be parsed",
    }, {
        classname: 'custom-tooltip-parse',
        parse: '{|style="white-space:nowrap;"\n!Parameter:\n|<#parameter#>\n|-\n!Lc:\n|{'+'{lc:<#parameter#>}}\n|-\n!Uc:\n|{'+'{uc:<#parameter#>}}\n|-\n!PAGENAME:\n|{'+'{PAGENAME}}\n|}',
    }, {
        classname: 'basic-tooltip',
        delay: 500,
        onHide: function(handle) { $(this).html($(handle).html()) },

Debug mode – tooltips_debug

Setting it to true will make some elements visible making it easier to spot problems. Debug mode can also be turned on temporarily by adding ?ttdebug=true at the end of the URL. Like so:

Other notes and tips

  • Additional classes to tooltips:
    • has-redlinks - given to tooltips that (as the name says) have redlinks inside – this can be used to hide tooltips with missing templates.
    • tooltip-loading - given to tooltips that are still waiting for parsed contents to load – you can use it to show loading indicator or just hide the tooltip until it's ready.
    • tt-tooltip-type - every tooltip receives class based on its type (ex: tt-basic-tooltip) – great for having different looking tooltip types.
  • If your tooltips has shadow you might want to make space for it by adding margin to them or by adding padding to the <div> that contains active tooltips (#tooltip-wrapper).


Feel free to add your wiki to the list if it uses this script to show how it works in action.

See also

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