Why are Arabic and Chinese characters rendered correctly even without using meta charset="utf-8"?

I am very new to HTML. Recently I encountered the <meta charset="utf-8>" tag which ensures letters and characters are rendered properly in a browser.

But I was wondering why even if I do not specify UTF-8 all letters and characters are displayed perfectly anyway?


  • The page you're sending to the browser uses a specific character encoding (e.g. UTF-8). The browser must interpret the page in the correct encoding to read it correctly (i.e. as intended) and display the correct characters. There are several ways in which the browser determines what encoding to use, which it falls back to successively:

    1. HTTP Content-Type header
    2. HTML meta tags
    3. any built-in heuristics
    4. the browser/system default encoding

    If the page displays correctly without an HTML meta tag, that means one of the other mechanisms caused the browser to choose to interpret the page as UTF-8. Probably your web server is outputting an HTTP Content-Type header, or your browser/system's default is UTF-8.