Closers and trailers

closer trailer signatures (in letters) salutation
closer trailer respLine dateline signed salute

Using closer to group together information at the bottom of a division (especially in letters); the usual contents of closer; difference between closer and trailer

The closer element serves the same kind of function as opener, but at the end of a div rather than at the beginning. It groups together the elements which typically fall at the end of a textual division (especially letters), such as signatures, salutes, and dates. The significant elements it may contain are:

Closers and trailers are fairly close in function, but not identical. We think of the difference as follows: closer is for things which are part of the form of the thing whose end is being marked: for instance, the closing salutation of a letter, the date or signature at the end of a poem.

By contrast, a trailer marks the end of the division itself—it is not part of the content of the section or division, but is rather part of its enclosure. It complements the function of the heading, in announcing the completion of a section of text. Things which are typically encoded within trailer include words like Finis or The End, or any other statement of conclusion which appears at the end of a division, such as Here ends the first Chapter or That’s all, folks. Much less frequent, but illustrative: the word Unfinished following the end of an unfinished poem.