The <pre> HTML element is used to preserve the original formatting and spacing of the text within it. It represents preformatted text, which is typically used for displaying code snippets, ASCII art, or any text that needs to maintain its original indentation or spacing.

Here’s an example of how to use the <pre> element:

  This is some
  preformatted text.
  It will preserve
  the original spacing
  and indentation.

In this example, the content within the opening and closing <pre> tags is displayed exactly as it appears in the HTML source code, with any leading spaces or line breaks maintained. This is useful for displaying code examples or preserving the formatting of text that relies on specific spacing, such as ASCII art.

The <pre> element is commonly used in combination with other elements, such as <code>, to create a styled and semantically meaningful representation of code snippets:

  function greet() {
      console.log("Hello, world!");

In this example, the <pre> element wraps the <code> element to display a code snippet with preserved formatting. The <code> element can be further styled using CSS to highlight syntax or apply specific code styling.

It’s important to note that the <pre> element may introduce horizontal scrollbars if the content exceeds the available width. To prevent this, you can apply CSS styles, such as overflow: auto;, to the <pre> element or its parent container to enable horizontal scrolling only when necessary.