Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Limiting Lines in a Table Cell.

Limiting Lines in a Table Cell

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 23, 2019)

Maria has a table that she doesn't want to extend past three lines vertically in any given cell. She wonders if there is a way to lock how many lines there can be in any given cell of a table.

Normally the height of a row (which, of course, controls the height of cells in that row) can vary from row to row. Word does this so that whatever you place in the row can be fully accommodated by the table. There may be times when you don't want the row to expand, but instead you want the row to be a specific height.

Here's how you can set the row height to only allow three lines of text:

  1. Select the entire table. (Position the insertion point within the table, display the Layout tab of the ribbon, and choose Select Table from the Select pull-down list.)
  2. Right-click the selected table and then choose Table Properties from the Context menu. Word displays the Table Properties dialog box.
  3. Make sure the Row tab is selected. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Row tab of the Table Properties dialog box.

  5. In the Specify Height box, indicate how high you want each row. (For three lines of 12-point type, you should specify one-half inch.)
  6. Using the Row Height Is drop-down list, choose Exactly.
  7. Click OK.

Now your row height will never go above whatever you set in step 4. Note that this approach won't stop someone from adding information that requires more than three lines in a table cell; it just won't display anything beyond the first three lines.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (8136) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Limiting Lines in a Table Cell.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Using a Custom Format to Add Dashes

Want some dashes automatically added in values you display in a cell? It may be trickier to develop a custom format than ...

Discover More

Changing a Macro Description

Part of documenting macros is to provide a good, succinct description of what they do. Changing the description of an ...

Discover More

Letters Turn Into Squares

Imagine that you are typing away, and all of a sudden your beautiful prose turns into a series of small rectangles that ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Quickly Removing Table Borders

Insert a table in your document and Word assumes that you want borders around the table and its cells. Here's a shortcut ...

Discover More

Spacing Table Rows Vertically

Want to get just the right amount of spacing above and below text in a table cell? A very easy way to do this is to ...

Discover More

Applying Borders to Tables

Want to change the borders that Word adds to your tables? You have complete control over the way your borders appear, ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is three less than 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.