The Gatsby Head API cannot set the language attribute on the html tag  💀 ⚠️

Last week we migrated from React Helmet to the new Gatsby Head API on our unauthorized and rum-fueled treasure hunt.

It was surprisingly straightforward as my existing use of React Helmet used their newest style,

// File: src/components/page-head.js

import React from "react";
import { Helmet } from "react-helmet";

export default function PageHead(props) {
  const { location, title } = props;
  const canonical = `${siteUrl}${location.pathname}`;
  return (
    <Helmet>
      <html lang="en" />
      <title>{title}</title>
      <link rel="canonical" href={canonical} />
    </Helmet>
  );
}

and that is the same structure expected by the Gatsby Head API as well, just without the Helmet wrapper.

// File: src/components/page-head.js

import React from "react";

export default function PageHead(props) {
  const { location, title } = props;
  const canonical = `${siteUrl}${location.pathname}`;
  return (
    <>
      <html lang="en" /> // Read below before copying this line!!!
      <title>{title}</title>
      <link rel="canonical" href={canonical} />
    </>
  );
}
// File: src/pages/example.js

import React from "react";
import PageHead from "../components/

export function Head(props) {
  return <PageHead {...props} />;
}

export default function ExamplePage() {
  return <div>Hello World</div>;
}

But with some tiny differences that I did not pick up on until I actually read the documentation a little more closely after the stream 🤦‍♀️

The Gatsby Head API only messes with the head element, while ReactHelmet also lets you mess with the html and body attributes.

Meaning my use of <html lang="en"> above was silently ignored 😱

To add the language attribute back in, I had to reach for the onRenderBody lifecycle hook:

// File: gatsby-ssr.js

import React from "react";

export const onRenderBody = (gatsbyUtils) => {
  const { setHtmlAttributes } = gatsbyUtils;

  setHtmlAttributes({ lang: "en" });
};

There is also a setBodyAttributes utils to use if your original use of React Helmet sets body attributes you would like to keep around.

 

All the best,
Queen Raae

You might also be interested in...

Stuck on a reef in the sharky waters around the Gatsby islands?

Book a 1-on-1 Gatsby Call with Queen Raae. Friendly advice you can put into action immediately, guaranteed!

Serious about Gatsby? Sign up for emails sent every weekday to help you get the most out of Gatsby!