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selectolax logo

A fast HTML5 parser with CSS selectors using Modest and Lexbor engines.


From PyPI using pip:

pip install selectolax

If installation fails due to compilation errors, you may need to install Cython:

pip install selectolax[cython]

This usually happens when you try to install an outdated version of selectolax on a newer version of Python.

Development version from GitHub:

git clone --recursive
cd selectolax
pip install -r requirements_dev.txt
python install

How to compile selectolax while developing:

make clean
make dev

Basic examples

In [1]: from selectolax.parser import HTMLParser
   ...: html = """
   ...: <h1 id="title" data-updated="20201101">Hi there</h1>
   ...: <div class="post">Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. </div>
   ...: <div class="post">Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.</div>
   ...: """
   ...: tree = HTMLParser(html)

In [2]: tree.css_first('h1#title').text()
Out[2]: 'Hi there'

In [3]: tree.css_first('h1#title').attributes
Out[3]: {'id': 'title', 'data-updated': '20201101'}

In [4]: [node.text() for node in tree.css('.post')]
['Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. ',
 'Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.']
In [1]: html = "<div><p id=p1><p id=p2><p id=p3><a>link</a><p id=p4><p id=p5>text<p id=p6></div>"
   ...: selector = "div > :nth-child(2n+1):not(:has(a))"

In [2]: for node in HTMLParser(html).css(selector):
   ...:     print(node.attributes, node.text(), node.tag)
   ...:     print(node.parent.tag)
   ...:     print(node.html)
{'id': 'p1'}  p
<p id="p1"></p>
{'id': 'p5'} text p
<p id="p5">text</p>

Available backends

Selectolax supports two backends: Modest and Lexbor. By default, all examples use the Modest backend. Most of the features between backends are almost identical, but there are still some differences.

To use lexbor, just import the parser and use it in the similar way to the HTMLParser.

In [1]: from selectolax.lexbor import LexborHTMLParser

In [2]: html = """
   ...: <title>Hi there</title>
   ...: <div id="updated">2021-08-15</div>
   ...: """

In [3]: parser = LexborHTMLParser(html)
In [4]: parser.root.css_first("#updated").text()
Out[4]: '2021-08-15'

Simple Benchmark

  • Extract title, links, scripts and a meta tag from main pages of top 754 domains. See examples/ for more information.
Package Time
Beautiful Soup (html.parser) 61.02 sec.
lxml 9.09 sec.
html5_parser 16.10 sec.
selectolax (Modest) 2.94 sec.
selectolax (Lexbor) 2.39 sec.