# When specifying placement of floats, is the list prioritized?

When specifying a float's placement, e.g. [htpb], is the order of the arguments specifying the priority of them?

Example:

\begin{figure}[htpb]
\includegraphics[width=0.7\textwidth]{sampleImage}
\caption{Example caption}
\label{fig:sampleImage}
\end{figure}

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General note: \label always belongs after \caption, otherwise you label the last label-able item instead. – Martin Scharrer Dec 19 '11 at 11:25
AFAIK, the order of the placement characters is not meaningful. But I don't know enough about it to post a full answer. – Martin Scharrer Dec 19 '11 at 11:27
AFAIK the order is irrelevant. See tex.stackexchange.com/questions/32359/… – Axel Sommerfeldt Dec 19 '11 at 11:40
@AxelSommerfeldt Why did you delete your answer? – egreg Dec 19 '11 at 11:49
There a long explanation of how the float algorithm works andh ow it can be influenced: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/39017/… – Frank Mittelbach Feb 29 '12 at 14:57

No, the order of the placement options is irrelevant. Every placement option will be stored as bit in a single value, so [tb] and [bt] will give the same value and therefore will have the same result.

See What is the exact purpose of \ftype@<TYPE>? for implementation details.

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The order of placement is irrelevant. You can try it to see for yourself.

\documentclass{octavo}
\usepackage{lipsum}
\begin{document}
\lipsum[1]
\begin{figure}[tb]
\rule{5cm}{5cm}
\end{figure}

Another line ...
\end{document}


Changing tb or bt still results in the same output. The 'here' also is immaterial where you place it. Change [bh] and will be placed correctly as 'here'.

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Some official reference with explanation would be much better than "you can try it yourself". – Martin Scharrer Dec 19 '11 at 12:58
@MartinScharrer Martin sure, but as AFAIK there is nothing other than the official source2e algorithm and is painfully long and obscure. Will try and summarize when I get some time. Anyway I thought that proving a hypothesis by experiment was an approved scientific method since the Renaissance and the example clearly demonstrates the answer to the OP's question.:) – Yiannis Lazarides Dec 19 '11 at 13:33
There is official documentation (in book form) such as the book by Leslie Lamport and TLC. That is the reference documentation. And I would think that the lshort documentation would also cover it (not checked though). And here on the site there is: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/39017/… – Frank Mittelbach Feb 29 '12 at 14:57
@FrankMittelbach Could you please also have a look a tex.stackexchange.com/questions/32359/… – Yiannis Lazarides Feb 29 '12 at 15:07
• if ! is given, ignore all settings by the parameters, like vertical space, number of floats, etc
• if h is given, try to place it here, if not possible then change h to t, the float then can appear on top of the next page
• if t is given try to place it on top of the current or next page.
• if b is given try to place it on bottom of the current or next page.
• if p is given place the float on the next page without additional text.
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The question is about if the order matters, not what the single character do. If your list is a priority order, please state so explicitly. – Martin Scharrer Dec 19 '11 at 13:17
Not actually addressing the question but did improve my understanding of how LaTeX treats these parameters. It's a better explanation than the table on en.wikibooks.org/wiki/LaTeX/… – benregn Dec 19 '11 at 14:01