XSLT is the abbreviation for Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations. It is one of two parts of the XSL specification and is a language for transforming XML documents (actually the transformation part, T stands for transformation).

XSLT is a XML transformation language, which transforms documents in XML format. To transform in this context means to take all data or part of it (Query of a selection with XPath) and create another XML document or a document in a format which can directly be used for displaying or printing (e.g. an HTML, RTF or TeX document). In particular the transformations involve:

  • adding constant text like HTML document type and header information
  • moving text
  • sorting text

An XML document is a tree on which the transformations are applied. The language is declarative, i.e. a program consist of a collection of several rules which transformations should be performed. The rules are applied recursively.

The XSLT processor checks which rules can be applied and executes the associated transformations based on a sequence of priorities.

You can use XSLT in combination with CSS to produce HTML documents.

An XSLT program is an XML document as the following template shows

<?xml version="1.0" ?>
<xsl:stylesheet xmlns:xsl="http://www.w3.org/1999/XSL/Transform">


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