The HTML beginnings
In 1980, physicist Tim Berners-Lee, working for the center of scientific research, CERN has created a prototype hypertext information system - ENQUIRE. The system used to organize and share documents related to scientific research. The revolutionary idea based on the fact that the user, using the links could from one location to view documents physically located elsewhere in the world.
In 1989, Berners-Lee and CERN software engineer Robert Cailliau presented two proposals for parallel hypertext information systems based on Internet. Both projects were characterized by similar functionality. A year later collaborated on a joint proposal was accepted by CERN - the project WorldWideWeb (W3) .
The first specification 
The first publicly available specification of HTML called HTML Tags (pol. HTML tags), has been posted on the Internet by Berners-Lee in 1991.  . It contains 22 elements comprising the initial, relatively simple design of HTML. Thirteen of these elements still exist in HTML 4 specification .
HTML was written based on SGML language, but not formally defined in SGML-u. The situation changed in mid 1993 when the IETF published a first proposal for an HTML specification: Berners-Lee and Dan Connolly - Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) Internet-Draft (pol. Sketch) - containing a description of the grammar in the form of SGML Document Type Definition (pol . document type definition) . Based on this document, browser makers have experimented with HTML modifying the attributes of existing tags and adding completely new. Sketch expired six months later, but was known to use specific browser NCSA Mosaic tags, used for inserting images. This fact reflects the philosophy of basing future IETF standards on prototypes that have been successful . Similarly, Dave Raggett at the end of 1993 his sketch HTML + (Hypertext Markup Format) suggested standardizing already implemented tags, eg. Related to the creation of tables and forms .
After the expiry of sketches HTML and HTML + at the beginning of 1994 it separated the IETF HTML Working Group, which in 1995 created the HTML 2.0 - the first official specification of HTML treated as standard and the basis for the future implementation of the next version of HTML. HTML 2.0, published in 1996, as a Request for Comments, included ideas from the HTML and HTML + . "HTML 1.0" never existed. 2.0 designation was intended to distinguish the new edition from previous drafts. 
Further development and in the custody of the IETF was stalled by competing interests. Since 1996, the HTML specifications have been maintained, with input from commercial software vendors, by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). In 2000, HTML has become the international standard (ISO / IEC 15445: 2000). The last HTML specification published in 1999, the W3C - HTML 4.01. Its mistakes have been corrected by the errata published in 2001.