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CompositeFieldDefinition defines a complex field that is composed of multiple simple fields. Use a composite field for objects that cannot be expressed as simple text strings or numbers such as:

  • Setting conditions for selecting the next step in a multistep form.
  • Assigning categories to a content item, where the composite field consists of a category dropdown and a button for reordering categories.
  • Defining an image gallery using a media select field, where the composite media field consist of a thumbnail and caption text. 
  • Specifying an access control list for JCR workspaces, where the composite ACL field consists of permission, scope and path.

class: info.magnolia.ui.form.field.definition.CompositeFieldDefinition

fieldType: composite

Here is a composite field that consists of a text field and a date field.

To export the content of the composite fields for translation via the CTS module, the composite field type has to be registered in the configuration of the module. For details see Registering additional field types.

Composite field properties

Simple composite field definition:

    - name: tabEvent
      label: Event
        - name: title
          fieldType: composite
          label: Event
            - name: title
              fieldType: text
              label: Title
            - name: date
              fieldType: date
              label: Date
Node nameValue





















See Referencing fields for further information.


<composite field name>


Name of parent composite field.



Node containing child fields.

<child field names>


Name of the child fields. You can use any simple field definition.



Field definition class of the child field.

<child field properties>


Any properties the child field supports.


optional, default is horizontal

Defines the layout of the child fields: horizontal or vertical.

Properties specific to the composite field.



Definition class of the composite parent field. Use info.magnolia.ui.form.field.definition.CompositeFieldDefinition.


optional, default is info.magnolia.ui.form.field.transformer.composite.CompositeTransformer

Custom property transformer definition.

Common field properties:





Defines the field type via either a field alias name or a fully-qualified field definition class name. See Field definition: Field types

Use the Definitions app to check the correct form of the name.



Pre-filled default value displayed in the field. The value can be overwritten by the user. Use alphanumeric characters.

(info) Applied only when creating a new item, not for already existing items.



Help text displayed when the user clicks the help icon. The value can be literal or retrieved from the message bundle with a key such as products.product.description. Use alphanumeric characters in literal values. Not applicable to the Static field.


optional, default is false

Enables i18n authoring support which allows editors to write foreign-language or regionally targeted content. A two-letter language identifier (en, de, fr etc.) is displayed on controls where i18n is set to true.


optional, default is the message bundle defined in the dialog definition

Message bundle such as com.example.messages for localized field labels. You can set this property in the parent dialog, form or tab definition. Child fields will inherit the bundle.



Field label displayed to editors. The value can be literal such as Product name or retrieved from the message bundle with a key such as products.product.label. Use alphanumeric characters in literal values.

If you don't provide the property then Magnolia falls back to a generated i18n key and displays they key in the UI.

If you don't want a label at all then define the property and set its value to empty space such as label: " " in YAML.


optional, default is the name of the field's parent node

Name of the node where the value is saved. The name jcrName is reserved. Use alphanumeric characters.



The placeholder text to be displayed in the empty field. The property replaces the deprecated placeholder text field.

(warning) Applicable in text and link fields.

The field is optional, but you should provide a translation or a hard-coded label, otherwise the empty field will display its auto-generated 18n key instead.


optional, default is false

Makes the field uneditable. Adding this property has the same effect as creating a Static field.


optional, default is false

Makes the field required (mandatory). An asterisk is displayed next to the field label. See also Checking for null values.


optional, default is "This field is required"

Error message displayed when required is true and the user saves an empty field. The value can be literal or retrieved from the message bundle with a key such as validation.message.required.



Adds one or more style names to this component. Multiple styles can be specified as a space-separated list of style names such as checkbox disabled. The style name will be rendered as an HTML class name, which can be used in a CSS definition. The class name is added to the field by calling the Vaadin method addStyleName.



Property transformer classes define how field values are stored in the repository. Each field has a default transformer class. You don't need to define a class unless you want to override the default. The value is a fully-qualified class name.

(warning) Complex field definitions may define a different default transformer in their constructor. See Transforming field values for more.


optional, most fields set a default value automatically

PropertyType of the stored value such as String, Boolean, Date or any other supported and defined data type. 

Best practice

When nesting composite fields, use the delegating transformer classes, DelegatingCompositeFieldTransformer or DelegatingMultiValueFieldTransformer, rather than the other available transformer classes.


  1. Hi There,

    When the layout is horizontal. Field display width is quite small. Is there any way where we can increase the width?

  2. I'm struggling with i18n here. Can you please give an example on how to I can enable users to add content in different languages. To expand on the example from the article: a composite field consisting of Title and Date and an editor can enter a German title so that we end up with Title(en) and Title(de)?

    1. Hello Christian,

      sorry for the belated answer. Taking the example above on this page, it should work if you set the i18n property to true for the parent title field, i.e. at the same level as fieldType: composite.



  3. Is there option to default a composite field layout vertically? Horizontal is too restrictive (even for just two items) and defining custom CSS via styleName seems excessive?