The paralist package offers the option of typesetting an itemized list with a \topsep length of zero, and this is especially useful in a tabular setting. However, the following minimal example does not seem to remove the space at the top of the second column as would be expected when compiled with pdflatex.


\begin{tabular}{p{20mm} p{50mm}}
  Itemize: & {%
    \item First item
  Enumerate: & {% 
    \item First item
  Description: & {%
    \item[Descriptor] First item

Can someone explain how I might get the first line of the second column to line up with the first line of the first column, please?

I can workaround with a negative \vspace before the respective list environments but I want a more elegant solution which I think paralist is supposed to provide.

1 Answer 1


Within a minipage this undesired top space would not be inserted. So, similar to the solution in Preventing itemize environment to insert initial vertical space, you could insert \@minipagetrue into the respective cells:


Your example code is fixed by this, the lines line up:

list example

Alternatively, you could define a column type for that:

  • 2
    I was just going to suggest \newcolumntype{P}[1]{>{\minipage{#1}\arraybackslash}l<{\endminipage\null}}, but this is nicer! However you could post this as \newcolumntype as well. Should be easier to handle this is required more then once. Feb 7, 2011 at 18:33
  • @Martin: Great idea! I added such a type declaration.
    – Stefan Kottwitz
    Feb 7, 2011 at 18:46
  • 3
    If hyperref is loaded for one or other reason it leaves a space before enumerate. Therefor use \newcommand*{\compress}{\@minipagetrue\NoHyper}. See the post How to include enumerate in tabular? tex.stackexchange.com/questions/11541/…
    – Danie Els
    Apr 10, 2011 at 13:42

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