# Abbreviations¶

Technical documentation often incurs the usage of many acronyms, which may need additional explanation, especially for new user of your project. For these matters, Material for MkDocs uses a combination of Markdown extensions to enable site-wide glossaries.

## Configuration¶

This configuration enables abbreviations and allows to build a simple project-wide glossary, sourcing definitions from a central location. Add the following line to mkdocs.yml:

markdown_extensions:
- abbr
- pymdownx.snippets


## Usage¶

Abbreviations can be defined by using a special syntax similar to URLs and footnotes, starting with a * and immediately followed by the term or acronym to be associated in square brackets.

Example:

The HTML specification is maintained by the W3C.

*[HTML]: Hyper Text Markup Language
*[W3C]: World Wide Web Consortium


Result:

The HTML specification is maintained by the W3C.

The Snippets extension can be used to implement a simple glossary by moving all abbreviations in a dedicated file1, and embedding it with the --8<-- notation at the end of each document.

Example:

The HTML specification is maintained by the W3C.

--8<-- "includes/abbreviations.md"

*[HTML]: Hyper Text Markup Language
*[W3C]: World Wide Web Consortium


Result:

The HTML specification is maintained by the W3C.

1. It's highly recommended to put the Markdown file containing the abbreviations outside of the docs folder (here, a folder with the name includes is used), as MkDocs might otherwise complain about an unreferenced file.