get_categories ( string|array $args = '' )

Retrieve list of category objects.

If you change the type to ‘link’ in the arguments, then the link categories will be returned instead. Also all categories will be updated to be backwards compatible with pre-2.3 plugins and themes.

Note: get_categories() is a wrapper for get_terms(). See get_terms() for values accepted for $args.

Return: (array) List of categories.

Source file: wp-includes/category.php

View source


Parameters

$args

(string|array) (Optional) Change the defaults retrieving categories.

Default value: ''



Source

function get_categories( $args = '' ) {
	$defaults = array( 'taxonomy' => 'category' );
	$args = wp_parse_args( $args, $defaults );

	$taxonomy = $args['taxonomy'];

	/**
	 * Filter the taxonomy used to retrieve terms when calling {@see get_categories()}.
	 *
	 * @since 2.7.0
	 *
	 * @param string $taxonomy Taxonomy to retrieve terms from.
	 * @param array  $args     An array of arguments. See {@see get_terms()}.
	 */
	$taxonomy = apply_filters( 'get_categories_taxonomy', $taxonomy, $args );

	// Back compat
	if ( isset($args['type']) && 'link' == $args['type'] ) {
		/* translators: 1: "type => link", 2: "taxonomy => link_category" alternative */
		_deprecated_argument( __FUNCTION__, '3.0',
			sprintf( __( '%1$s is deprecated. Use %2$s instead.' ),
				'<code>type => link</code>',
				'<code>taxonomy => link_category</code>'
			)
		);
		$taxonomy = $args['taxonomy'] = 'link_category';
	}

	$categories = (array) get_terms( $taxonomy, $args );

	foreach ( array_keys( $categories ) as $k )
		_make_cat_compat( $categories[$k] );

	return $categories;
}


Changelog


User Contributed Notes

  1. Drop-down box as used in Parent category at post category page
    This is the code used in the built-in category page.

    wp_dropdown_categories( array(
    	'hide_empty'       => 0,
    	'name'             => 'category_parent',
    	'orderby'          => 'name',
    	'selected'         => $category->parent,
    	'hierarchical'     => true,
    	'show_option_none' => __('None')
    ) );
    

    The slightly altered code below will grab all categories and display them with indent for a new level (child category). The select box will have name and id attribute values of ‘select_name’. This select element will not display a default “none” as the original code was used to attach a category as a child to another category (or none).

    wp_dropdown_categories( array(
    	'hide_empty'   => 0,
    	'name'         => 'select_name',
    	'id'           => 'select_name',
    	'hierarchical' => true
    ) );
    
  2. Drop-down Box
    Here’s how to create a drop-down box of the subcategories of, say, a category that archives information on past events.
    This mirrors the example of the drop-down example of wp_get_archives() which shows how to create a drop-down box for monthly archives.

    Suppose the category whose subcategories you want to show is category 10, and that its category “nicename” is “archives”.

    <select name="event-dropdown"> 
    	<option value=""><?php echo esc_attr_e( 'Select Event', 'textdomain' ); ?></option> 
    	<?php 
    	$categories = get_categories( array( 'child_of' => 10 ); 
    	foreach ( $categories as $category ) {
    		printf( '<option value="%1$s">%2$s (%3$s)</option>',
    			esc_attr( '/category/archives/' . $category->category_nicename ),
    			esc_html( $category->cat_name ),
    			esc_html( $category->category_count )
    		);
      	}
     	?>
    </select>
    
  3. List Categories and Descriptions
    This example will list, in alphabetic order, all categories presented as links to the corresponding category archive. Each category description is listed after the category link.

    <?php
    $categories = get_categories( array(
    	'orderby' => 'name',
    	'order'   => 'ASC'
    ) );
    
    foreach( $categories as $category ) {
    	$category_link = sprintf( '<a href="%1$s" alt="%2$s">%3$s</a>'
    		esc_url( get_category_link( $category->term_id ) ),
    		esc_attr( sprintf( __( 'View all posts in %s', 'textdomain' ), $category->name ) ),
    		esc_html( $category->name )
    	);
    	
    	echo '<p>' . sprintf( esc_html__( 'Category: %s', 'textdomain' ), $category_link ) . '</p> ';
    	echo '<p>' . sprintf( esc_html__( 'Description: %s', 'textdomain' ), $category->description ) . '</p>';
    	echo '<p>' . sprintf( esc_html__( 'Post Count: %s', 'textdomain' ), $category->count ) . '</p>';
    } 
    
  4. Get only top level categories
    To get the top level categories only, set parent value to zero. This example gets link and name of top level categories.

    $categories = get_categories( array(
    	'orderby' => 'name',
    	'parent'  => 0
    ) );
    
    foreach ( $categories as $category ) {
    	printf( '<a href="%1$s">%2$s</a><br />',
    		esc_url( get_category_link( $category->term_id ) ),
    		esc_html( $category->name )
    	);
    }
    

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