Collapsing Categories

Adds a widget which uses Javascript to dynamically expand or collapse the set of
posts for each category.

Author:Robert Felty (profile at
WordPress version required:2.8
WordPress version tested:5.4.4
Plugin version:2.2.7
Added to WordPress repository:07-01-2008
Last updated:25-08-2020
Rating, %:82
Rated by:54
Plugin URI:
Total downloads:256 645
Active installs:9 000+
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Collapsing Categories creates an expandable list of categories and
subcategories. It can also expand to show posts. The primary usage is as a
widget, but you can also use the code in your theme manually if you wish (see
installation instructions)


Style options can be set via the settings panel. All other options can be set
from the widget panel. If you wish to insert the code into your theme manually
instead of using a widget, you can use the following options. These options
can be given to the collapsCat() function either as an array or in query
style, in the same manner as the wp_list_categories function.

   'showPostCount' => true,
   'inExclude' => 'exclude',
   'inExcludeCats' => '',
   'showPosts' => true, 
   'showPages' => false,
   'linkToCat' => true,
   'olderThan' => 0,
   'excludeAll' => '0',
   'catSortOrder' => 'ASC',
   'catSort' => 'catName',
   'postSortOrder' => 'ASC',
   'postSort' => 'postTitle',
   'expand' => '0',
   'defaultExpand' => '',
   'postTitleLength' => 0,
   'accordion' => 0,
   'catfeed' => 'none',
   'taxonomy' => 'category',
   'showPostDate' => false,
   'postDateAppend' => 'after',
   'postDateFormat' => 'm/d',
   'useCookies' => true,
   'showTopLevel' => true,
   'postsBeforeCats' => false,
   'expandCatPost' => true,
  • inExclude
    • Whether to include or exclude certain categories
      • ‘exclude’ (default)
      • ‘include’
  • inExcludeCats
    • The categories which should be included or excluded
  • showPages
    • Whether or not to include pages as well as posts. Default if false
  • linkToCat
    • 1 (true), clicking on a category title will link to the category archive (default)
    • 0 (false), clicking on a category title expands and collapses
  • catSort
    • How to sort the categorys. Possible values:
      • ‘catName’ the title of the category (default)
      • ‘catId’ the Id of the category
      • ‘catSlug’ the url of the category
      • ‘catCount’ the number of posts in the category
      • ‘catOrder’ custom order specified in the categorys settings
  • catSortOrder
    • Whether categories should be sorted in normal or reverse
      order. Possible values:

      • ‘ASC’ normal order (a-z 0-9) (default)
      • ‘DESC’ reverse order (z-a 9-0)
  • postSort
    • How to sort the posts. Possible values:
      • ‘postDate’ the date of the post (default)
      • ‘postId’ the Id of the post
      • ‘postTitle’ the title of the post
      • ‘postComment’ the number of comments on the post
      • ‘postOrder’ sort by menu order
  • postSortOrder
    • Whether post should be sorted in normal or reverse
      order. Possible values:

      • ‘ASC’ normal order (a-z 0-9) (default)
      • ‘DESC’ reverse order (z-a 9-0)
  • expand
    • The symbols to be used to mark expanding and collapsing. Possible values:
      • ‘0’ Triangles (default)
      • ‘1’ + –
      • ‘2’ [+] [-]
      • ‘3’ images (you can upload your own if you wish)
      • ‘4’ custom symbols
  • customExpand
    • If you have selected ‘4’ for the expand option, this character will be
      used to mark expandable link categories
  • customCollapse
    • If you have selected ‘4’ for the expand option, this character will be
      used to mark collapsible link categories
  • postTitleLength
    • Truncate post titles to this number of characters (default: 0 = don’t
  • accordion
    • When set to true, expanding one category closes all others at that level
  • catfeed
    • Whether to add a link to the rss feed for a category. Possible values:
      • ‘none’ (default)
      • ‘text’ shows RSS
      • ‘image’ shows an RSS icon
  • taxonomy
    • Type of taxonmy to display. Possible values:
      • ‘category’ (default)
      • ‘link_category’
      • ‘post_tag’
      • ‘both’ (categories and tags)
      • any other registered taxononmy (e.g. recipe press uses recipe-categories)
  • showPostDate
    • When true, show the date of each post
  • postDateAppend
    • Show the date before or after the post title. Possible values:
      • ‘after’ (default)
      • ‘before’
  • postDateFormat
    • What format the post date is in. This uses the standard php date
      formatting codes
  • useCookies
    • When true, expanding and collapsing of categories is remembered for each
      visitor. When false, categories are always display collapsed (unless
      explicitly set to auto-expand). Possible values:

      • 1 (true) (default)
      • 0 (false)
  • showTopLevel
    • When set to false, the top level category will not be shown. This could
      be useful if you only want to show subcategories from one particular
      top-level category

      • 1 (true) (default)
      • 0 (false)
  • postsBeforeCats
    • When set to true, posts in category X will be ordered before
      subcategories of category X

      • 1 (true)
      • 0 (false) (default)
  • expandCatPost
    • When set to true, any category to which a post is assigned will
      automatically be expanded on a single post page.

      • 1 (true) (default)
      • 0 (false)
  • showEmptyCat
    • When set to true, empty categories are shown
      • 0 (false) (default)
      • 1 (true)
  • debug
    • When set to true, extra debugging information will be displayed in the
      underlying code of your page (but not visible from the browser). Use
      this option if you are having problems



This will produce a list with:
* animation on
* categories shown in alphabetical order
* using images to mark collapsing and expanding
* exclude posts from the categories general and uncategorized


echo '

    ‘ . “\n”;
    if (function_exists(‘collapsCat’)) {
    ‘postSort’ => ‘postDate’,
    ‘postSortOrder’ => ‘DESC’,
    ), $_COOKIE);
    } else {
    echo “



I use this plugin in my blog at


Currently this plugin relies on Javascript to expand and collapse the links.
If a user’s browser doesn’t support javascript they won’t see the links to the
posts, but the links to the categories will still work (which is the default
behavior in wordpress anyways)