In most browsers, clearing the history leaves currently opened tabs untouched.

In Safari on iOS however, the only method of clearing the history I know of is Settings → Safari Clear History and Website Data, which also closes all tabs. This is never my intent, and has tripped me up several times already.

Is there some method to clear the history but keep the current tabs?

1 Answer 1


Turns out, this is just a case of awkward design.

  • There is no warning about "Clear History and Website Data" also closing tabs.
  • There is a "Clear" button in the in-browser history view, which doesn't affect tabs. It doesn't communicate however, whether it also deletes cookies and website settings.

To use the latter:

  1. In Safari, open the bookmarks pane.
  2. Select the history tab of the pane (the clock symbol).
  3. Click clear at the bottom-right of the pane.

enter image description here

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