# How to force multiple tables onto a single page?

I am doing the final layouting pass on a book, and while LaTeX does "the right thing" most of the time, and the occassional ugliness can be tweaked with minor touches to the text, there are cases where I feel there is no alternative to forcing LaTeX's hand.

The case I am looking at right now are three tables, which need to be close together due to context, and basically would fill a complete page on their own.

However, LaTeX basically insists that three tables on one page look bad, and spreads them over multiple pages.

How could I force those tables to be on the same page?

Stating \begin{table}[h] doesn't work. (LaTeX apparently simply ignores the setting.)

Putting the tables into individual cells of a page-sized table ("the HTML way") doesn't work, because I cannot put captions and labels to them properly that way.

Attached is a much dumbed-down version of the problem as a kind of MWE. I used scrbook as documentclass because that's what the original document is in, and changing that (or the twocolumn layout) is not an option.

\documentclass[paper=a4,fontsize=10pt,twocolumn]{scrbook}

\usepackage{lipsum}
\usepackage{tabularx}

\begin{document}

\lipsum[1]

\begin{table}
\caption{Tab 1}
\begin{tabularx}{\columnwidth}{|X|}
\hline
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\hline
\end{tabularx}
\end{table}

\lipsum[2]

\begin{table}
\caption{Tab 2}
\begin{tabularx}{\columnwidth}{|X|}
\hline
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\hline
\end{tabularx}
\end{table}

\lipsum[3]

\begin{table}
\caption{Tab 3}
\begin{tabularx}{\columnwidth}{|X|}
\hline
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\hline
\end{tabularx}
\end{table}

\end{document}

• If they realy fit in/on one page, put all tabulars and captions inside a single table-environment. Using p as placement specifier to all tables might also work. Using a twocolumn document is a bit more difficult tough, and needs extra manual work. – Johannes_B Sep 16 '14 at 8:59
• I cannot believe I missed out on the [p] positional specifier. It indeed did the trick just like that. Feel welcome to turn that into an answer. – DevSolar Sep 16 '14 at 9:05

If you really want to have the tables together on one page, cheat a bit. Put all the material in a single table-environemt. That means you need to put the stuff between the tables either in front or after them. Here as a quick example.

\documentclass[twocolumn,paper=a4,fontsize=11pt,captions=tableabove]{scrbook}

\usepackage{showframe}
\usepackage{lipsum}
\usepackage{xcolor}
\usepackage{tabularx}
\colorlet{tablegray}{gray!50!white}
\newcommand{\faketable}[1]{{\color{tablegray}\rule{\linewidth}{.#1\textheight}}}
\begin{document}

\lipsum[1-2]

Now we are using a twocolumn, floating environment and put all
tables and all captions inside. This is hardwired, LaTeX will
float the *whole container* around. This might need some

\begin{table*}
\begin{minipage}{0.45\textwidth}
\caption{I am das duck}
\faketable{3}
\bigbreak
\caption{I am the penguin}
\faketable{5}
\end{minipage}
\hfill
\begin{minipage}{.45\linewidth}
\caption{I bin das Walross}
\faketable{8}
\end{minipage}
\end{table*}

\lipsum[2]
\lipsum[3]
\end{document}


Here is what pdflatex will give you:

• Could it be that you accidently posted the original MWE again instead of your answer? – Gilean0709 Sep 16 '14 at 9:10
• @Gilean0709 Yes, i did. Sorry. I was already heading for lunch. I am going to have a look at this this eveniing and extend my answer a bit. – Johannes_B Sep 16 '14 at 12:28
• @Johannes_B any chance for an update/extension? ;-) – Paul Gessler Feb 16 '15 at 7:06
• @PaulGessler Oh, forgot about that. Give me a bit of time. – Johannes_B Feb 16 '15 at 13:24