Project: remarkjs/remark-reference-links

Package: remark-reference-links@6.0.1

  1. Dependents: 0
  2. remark plugin to transform links and images to references and definitions
  1. remark 202
  2. unified 181
  3. markdown 150
  4. plugin 138
  5. mdast 86
  6. remark-plugin 75
  7. definition 16
  8. link 15
  9. reference 14
  10. image 13


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remark plugin to change links and images to references with separate definitions.


What is this?

This package is a unified (remark) plugin to turn links ([text](url)) and images (![alt](url)) into references ([text][id], ![alt][id]) and definitions ([id]: url).

unified is a project that transforms content with abstract syntax trees (ASTs). remark adds support for markdown to unified. mdast is the markdown AST that remark uses. This is a remark plugin that transforms mdast.

When should I use this?

This project is useful when you want to transform markdown and prefer that it uses references and definitions. Long URLs in source code can make reading markdown difficult. References and definitions improve that by moving those URLs into definitions, outside of paragraphs.

This plugin is very similar to the alternative remark-defsplit. The difference is that that plugin generates identifiers based on hostnames of URLs and places definitions at the end of each section, whereas this plugin generates numeric identifiers at the end of the document.

A different plugin, remark-inline-links, does the inverse: turn references and definitions into links and images.


This package is ESM only. In Node.js (version 12.20+, 14.14+, or 16.0+), install with npm:

npm install remark-reference-links

In Deno with esm.sh:

import remarkReferenceLinks from 'https://esm.sh/remark-reference-links@6'

In browsers with esm.sh:

<script type="module">
  import remarkReferenceLinks from 'https://esm.sh/remark-reference-links@6?bundle'


Say we have the following file example.md:

# Some project


## Section

[A link](https://example.com)

And our module example.js looks as follows:

import {read} from 'to-vfile'
import {remark} from 'remark'
import remarkReferenceLinks from 'remark-reference-links'


async function main() {
  const file = await remark()
    .process(await read('example.md'))


Now running node example.js yields:

# Some project


## Section

[A link][3]

[1]: https://github.com/remarkjs/remark-defsplit/actions

[2]: https://github.com/remarkjs/remark-defsplit/workflows/main/badge.svg

[3]: https://example.com

👉 Note: Observe that definitions are added at the end of the document and that IDs are numeric identifiers.


This package exports no identifiers. The default export is remarkReferenceLinks.

Plugin to change links and images to references with separate definitions. There are no options.


This package is fully typed with TypeScript. There are no extra exported types.


Projects maintained by the unified collective are compatible with all maintained versions of Node.js. As of now, that is Node.js 12.20+, 14.14+, and 16.0+. Our projects sometimes work with older versions, but this is not guaranteed.

This plugin works with unified version 3+ and remark version 4+.


Use of remark-reference-links does not involve rehype (hast) or user content so there are no openings for cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks.


See contributing.md in remarkjs/.github for ways to get started. See support.md for ways to get help.

This project has a code of conduct. By interacting with this repository, organization, or community you agree to abide by its terms.


MIT © Titus Wormer