Authors:Bill Keese

A Menu widget


The Menu widget is used for three types of menus:

MenuItem widgets are the actual items in the menu. The PopupMenuItem is like a MenuItem, but displays a submenu or other widget to the right. A PopupMenuItem always has two child nodes: a tag with the displayed label (usually in a SPAN tag), and a widget to be popped up, typically a dijit.Menu widget.


Programmatic example

<script type="text/javascript">

  var pMenu;
        pMenu = new dijit.Menu({
        pMenu.addChild(new dijit.MenuItem({
            label:"Simple menu item"
        pMenu.addChild(new dijit.MenuItem({
            label:"Disabled menu item",
            disabled: true
        pMenu.addChild(new dijit.MenuItem({
            label:"Menu Item With an icon",
            iconClass:"dijitEditorIcon dijitEditorIconCut",
            onClick: function(){alert('i was clicked')}
        pMenu.addChild(new dijit.CheckedMenuItem({
            label: "checkable menu item"
        pMenu.addChild(new dijit.MenuSeparator());

        var pSubMenu = new dijit.Menu();
        pSubMenu.addChild(new dijit.MenuItem({
            label:"Submenu item"
        pSubMenu.addChild(new dijit.MenuItem({
            label:"Submenu item"
        pMenu.addChild(new dijit.PopupMenuItem({

<span id="prog_menu">Right click me to get a menu</span>

Declarative markup

Creation from markup is even easier. This example creates a context menu for the whole window.

<script type="text/javascript">
<div dojoType="dijit.Menu" id="windowContextMenu" contextMenuForWindow="true" style="display: none;">
        <div dojoType="dijit.MenuItem" iconClass="dijitEditorIcon dijitEditorIconCut"
                onClick="alert('not actually cutting anything, just a test!')">Cut</div>
        <div dojoType="dijit.MenuItem" iconClass="dijitEditorIcon dijitEditorIconCopy"
                onClick="alert('not actually copying anything, just a test!')">Copy</div>
        <div dojoType="dijit.MenuItem" iconClass="dijitEditorIcon dijitEditorIconPaste"
                onClick="alert('not actually pasting anything, just a test!')">Paste</div>
        <div dojoType="dijit.MenuSeparator"></div>
        <div dojoType="dijit.PopupMenuItem">
                <span>Enabled Submenu</span>
                <div dojoType="dijit.Menu" id="submenu1">
                        <div dojoType="dijit.MenuItem" onClick="alert('Submenu 1!')">Submenu Item One</div>
                        <div dojoType="dijit.MenuItem" onClick="alert('Submenu 2!')">Submenu Item Two</div>
        <div dojoType="dijit.PopupMenuItem">
                <span>Popup of something other than a menu</span>
                <div dojoType="dijit.ColorPalette"></div>

<span> Click anywhere on the page to see this menu.</span>

Note that popup menus should be hidden via specifying style=”display: none”. Hiding the menu indirectly via a class won’t work (in that the menu will remain invisible even when it’s supposed to be displayed).



Action Key
Open a context menu

On Windows: shift-f10 or the Windows context menu key.

On Firefox on the Macintosh: ctrl-space.

On Safari 4 or Chrome on Mac: VO+shift+m (VO is usually control+opton). But to use this keyboard sequence (on Safari or Chrome) the voice-over option on safari or chrome(in System Prefences / Universal Access) must be turned on.

Navigate menu items Up and down arrow keys
Activate a menu item Spacebar or enter
Open a submenu Spacebar, enter, or right arrow
Close a context menu or submenu Esc or left arrow
Close a context menu and all open submenus Tab

Known Issues

When reading a menu item on Firefox 2, JAWS 8 may say “submenu” for an item that does not have a submenu. This will be fixed in Firefox 3.

Implementation Notes


Context menus are focused as soon as they are opened, and focus follows the mouse (or the keyboard arrow keys)

For a static Menu/MenuBar, focus is deferred until user clicks it, or tabs into it. Once user clicks on a Menu/MenuBar, it focuses on it, and then (as with a context menu) any mouse movement or keyboard movement (via arrow keys) will change focus.

CSS Classes

There are separate CSS classes for indicating that a MenuItem is mouse hovered (dijitMenuItemHover), and to indicate which MenuItem is selected/active (dijitMenuItemSelected). In tundra/nihilo/soria they look exactly the same, although that could be customized by a user, including removing the hover effect altogether.

“Selected/active” is in the sense of the selected tab, and is controlled by the mouse or keyboard. Implementation-wise, it means that either the MenuItem has focus, or focus is on a submenu of that MenuItem.

The Menu/MenuBar domNode has a dijitMenuPassive/dijitMenuActive class so that CSS rules for hover can be customized based on whether or not the menu has focus. Once the menu gets focus the dijitMenuHover effect is disabled in favor of the dijitMenuSelected effect, so that the dijitMenuHover effect won’t linger on “File” if user moved the mouse over “File” but then used the keyboard arrows to move to the “Edit” MenuBarItem. (This is a setting in tundra/nihilo/soria and can be changed if desired.)

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