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XML DOM firstChild Property


Document Object Reference Document Object

Definition and Usage

The firstChild property returns the first child node of the document.

Syntax

documentObject.firstChild


Tips and Notes

Note: Firefox, and most other browsers, will treat empty white-spaces or new lines as text nodes, Internet Explorer will not. So, in the example below, we have a function that checks the node type of the first child node.

Element nodes has a nodeType of 1, so if the first child node is not an element node, it moves to the next node, and checks if this node is an element node. This continues until the first child node (which must be an element node) is found. This way, the result will be correct in all browsers.

Tip: To read more about the differences between browsers, visit our DOM Browsers chapter in our XML DOM Tutorial.


Example

The following code fragment loads "books.xml" into xmlDoc using loadXMLDoc() and displays the node name and node type of the first child node of the document:

Example

//check if the first node is an element node
function get_firstchild(n)
{
x=n.firstChild;
while (x.nodeType!=1)
  {
  x=x.nextSibling;
  }
return x;
}

xmlDoc=loadXMLDoc("books.xml");

x=get_firstchild(xmlDoc);
document.write("Nodename: " + x.nodeName);
document.write(" (nodetype: " + x.nodeType);

Output:

Nodename: bookstore (nodetype: 1)

Try it yourself »

Try-It-Yourself Demos

Get the last child node of the document


Document Object Reference Document Object

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