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Grouping Entries by First Letter of Last Name

A tutorial on how to group entries by the first letter of a field value in Craft CMS. In this example we'll be ordering a list of book authors by their last name with a header for each letter of the alphabet with results.

I'm working on a site where there are a large number of authors with books listed on the sites. The goal is to list all the authors alphabetically by last name with a header above each letter.

The end result will look like this:

In order to do this we need to use the group filter. We do this by first getting all the entries. The channel I have is called authors and has fields for firstName and lastName.

After getting the entries,  group them with the | group filter and then finally loop through all the entries outputting entries grouped alphabetically by first letter of last name.

    
      {# get all the entries #}
  {% set allEntries = craft.entries.section('authors').orderBy('lastName asc, firstName asc').all() %}

{# 
  // group all entries  by first letter of last name 
  // https://docs.craftcms.com/v3/dev/filters.html#group 
#}
  {% set allEntriesByGroup = allEntries | group('lastName[:1]') %}

{# loop through the entries #}
  {% for firstLetter, entriesInGroup in allEntriesByGroup %}
      {# display the Letter #}
      <h2>{{ firstLetter }}</h2>

      {# display the authors for this letter #}
      <ul>
      {% for entry in entriesInGroup %}
        <li>
          <a href="{{ entry.url }}">{{ entry.title }}</a>
        </li>
      {% endfor %}
      </ul>
  {% endfor %}