Background & Colours

In your <BODY> tag you can set a background colour or image (also called wallpaper) and the colour of text to be used in your HTML document. Colours are set using hexadecimal (scale of 16) numerals preceeded by the hash mark (#). The format is #RRGGBB, standing for the 256 values of Red(RR) Green(GG) and Blue(BB). Here are some examples:

This colour value is...
#000000 BLACK (RED = 0, GREEN = 0, BLUE = 0)
#00FFFF CYAN (No RED, maximum GREEN and BLUE)
#66FFCC PALE GREEN (Half RED, maximum GREEN, lots of BLUE)
#FF0000 RED (All RED, no GREEN or BLUE)
#999999 GREY (Equal values of RED, GREEN & BLUE)

Equal values from #111111 to #EEEEEE will always give grey, the lower the values the darker the shade.

As well as specifying an individual colour by its hex reference, you can use the 16 standard colours mentioned earlier in the chapter on Text Appearance. To remind you, they are:-

Black Maroon Green Olive
Navy Purple Teal Grey
Silver Red Lime Yellow
Blue Fuschia Aqua White
This colour name is...

The colours that can be specified in the BODY tag are:

Background Colour (<BODY BGCOLOR="#RRGGBB">)
This is the colour that will be displayed in the background providing no image has been specified as wallpaper.

Text Colour (<BODY TEXT="#RRGGBB">)
This sets the colour of the text to be used in the document. It can be overridden with an individual Font Colour (<FONT COLOR="#RRGGBB">) tag.

Link Colour (<BODY LINK="#RRGGBB">)
All Anchor links to other parts of your document or to other URLs are highlighted (and usually underlined) so this option allows you to set the colour for that highlighting.

Visited Link Colour (<BODY VLINK="#RRGGBB">)
Having visited another part of the document or URL most browsers remember this so this option allows you to set the remembered link colour.

Active Link Colour (<BODY ALINK="#RRGGBB">)
When clicking on a link it will change colour whilst your mouse button is held down so this option allows you to set that particular colour.

It isn't necessary for all these to be different colours, all the Link Colours can be the same if you wish, and can be the same as the Text Colour. The Background Colour must be different though as otherwise you'd never be able to read a word!

Tiled Background Image or Wallpaper (<BODY BACKGROUND="URL">)
This will load the image found at the particular URL location and tile it in the background. Until it has loaded the colour specified by BGCOLOR will be displayed. Most browsers allow you to switch off loading of images and/or backgrounds in which case the BACKGROUND image won't load so you must be careful to ensure that your text will show up against the Background Colour. If your Background Colour is white, your Background Image is dark and your text colour is light, then if the Background Image isn't loaded the text will be almost impossible to read so set your Background Colour wisely!

It is not necessary to include the word "BODY" more than once in the command. For example, the BODY tag for this page is:
<BODY BGCOLOR="#FCFCDC" TEXT="#703038" LINK="#703038" ALINK="#703038" VLINK="#703038">.