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I am using the WP-Paginate plug-in and need to apply a class to the containing LIs for the next/previous links. Can someone tell me how to do this? If there's a better/easier way to do this other than using WP-Paginate, then I'm open to suggestions. Thanks!

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Hi @user1462:

Happy to say that it's not hard at all to achieve what you are looking for.

As I understand it, you have to add a call to wp_paginate() in (one of) your theme(s) template file(s) when using this plugin, and that call looks something like this:

<?php if(function_exists('wp_paginate')) {
} ?>

To do what you need just create your own function, let's call it mysite_paginate() and call it instead of the code above.

Within your function mysite_paginate() call ob_start() to start output buffering, then call wp_paginate(), and then call ob_get_clean() to capture the output created by wp_paginate(). The final step is to then use a regular expression search and replace with preg_replace() to add the classes you want and then echo the results to the browser.

The code you need is below. You can add it to your theme's functions.php file or in a .php file of a plugin you may be writing:

function mysite_paginate() {
  if(function_exists('wp_paginate')) {
    $html = ob_get_clean();
    $html = preg_replace('#<li>(<a href="[^"]+" class="next">)#Us',
              '<li class="next">$1',$html);
    $html = preg_replace('#<li>(<a href="[^"]+" class="prev">)#Us',
              '<li class="prev">$1',$html);
    echo $html;

And if all goes as planned, this is what you should expect to see when using an element inspector with your browser:

Screenshot showing classes added to the HTML output of WordPress

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Nice post, Mike. I was trying to avoid suggesting anything too "advanced", not knowing the OP's comfort level with WP, but this certainly would do the trick ;) – Eric Martin Jan 22 '11 at 22:32
@Eric Martin - Thanks. The site is as much about creating a persistent resource that can be found by Google for people with the same question in the future as it is about meeting that persons needs so I try to be thorough. Also, check this out: meta.wordpress.stackexchange.com/questions/266 Maybe you could encourage questions about your plugins here? – MikeSchinkel Jan 22 '11 at 23:15
I will definitely be adding this site as a place to get help for my plugins. I've done the same for my jQuery plugin & stackoverflow! They are a great resource. – Eric Martin Jan 23 '11 at 15:44
@Eric Martin - Just to make sure it was clear, I was suggesting you encourage people to ask questions about your plugins here; it will give your plugins more exposure than having the questions be on your site or even on WordPress.org. I'm unclear if I got that across. BTW, I had not heard of your WP-Paginate plugin before but after looking at it I really, really like it. I wrote something similar custom for a client 2 years ago, but wish yours had been available at the time. – MikeSchinkel Jan 24 '11 at 0:40
@MikeSchinkel - yup, sorry if my response wasn't clear. I'll be adding this site as a place to get help for my plugins ;) – Eric Martin Jan 24 '11 at 22:31

If I understand you correctly, you want to change:

<li><a href="http://www.ericmmartin.com/blog/page/2/" class="next">»</a></li>


<li class="next"><a href="http://www.ericmmartin.com/blog/page/2/" class="next">»</a></li>

Besides modifying the source, you could do it with a little jQuery magic:

$('ol.wp-paginate .next').parent().addClass('next');


$('ol.wp-paginate .prev').parent().addClass('prev');

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Unfortunately, I'm not using jQuery. :( Also, using JavaScript to do this could cause the elements to shift once the JavaScript loads. – user1462 Jan 21 '11 at 19:41
I guess the only other reasonable option would be to modify the WP-Paginate code. – Eric Martin Jan 22 '11 at 0:26
Great to have you here at WordPress Answers. Hope we'll see you around some more. – MikeSchinkel Jan 22 '11 at 8:09

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