I downloaded this HTML file from archive.org, which is a digitilised book, written in Spanish. As such, it has plenty of accents and other unique symbols (e.g. ñ).

Now, when I open the html file in a text editor (mousepad), all text appears fine. However, when I open it using a web browser, special characters are not shown correctly. Some examples:

  • á is shown as á
  • ñ is shown as ñ
  • ó is shown as ó


I added <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8"/> to the HTML but this does not improve things. My suspicion is that I need to use a different charset option, but I have no idea which one! How can I know? I have searched for these characters (e.g. here) but even Google has issues understanding them.

  • If it looks fine from the web server then you need to ask the web server. – Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Jun 3 '18 at 15:56
  • UTF-8 is the correct charset, is the charset the server specifies (in HTTP header only), and your meta tag works for me in IE and FF. You did put it in the body of the head element, as required, right? (Chrome works for me even without the meta.) – dave_thompson_085 Jun 3 '18 at 19:51

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.