This feature has been removed from the Web standards. Though some browsers may still support it, it is in the process of being dropped. Avoid using it and update existing code if possible; see the compatibility table at the bottom of this page to guide your decision. Be aware that this feature may cease to work at any time.

The Event.initEvent() method is used to initialize the value of an event created using Document.createEvent().

Events initialized in this way must have been created with the Document.createEvent() method. This method must be called to set the event before it is dispatched, using EventTarget.dispatchEvent(). Once dispatched, it doesn't do anything anymore.

Do not use this method anymore as it is deprecated.

Instead use specific event constructors, like Event(). The page on Creating and triggering events gives more information about the way to use these.


event.initEvent(type, bubbles, cancelable);
Is a DOMString defining the type of event.
Is a Boolean deciding whether the event should bubble up through the event chain or not. Once set, the read-only property Event.bubbles will give its value.
Is a Boolean defining whether the event can be canceled. Once set, the read-only property Event.cancelable will give its value.


// Create the event.
var event = document.createEvent('Event');

// Create a click event that bubbles up and
// cannot be canceled 
event.initEvent('click', true, false);

// Listen for the event.
elem.addEventListener('click', function (e) {
  // matches elem
}, false);



Specification Status Comment
The definition of 'Event.initEvent()' in that specification.
Living Standard From Document Object Model (DOM) Level 2 Events Specification, deprecated it, superseded by event constructors.
Document Object Model (DOM) Level 2 Events Specification
The definition of 'Event.initEvent()' in that specification.
Obsolete Initial definition.

Browser compatibility

FeatureChromeEdgeFirefoxInternet ExplorerOperaSafari
Basic support Yes Yes


Yes — 171

Yes Yes Yes
FeatureAndroid webviewChrome for AndroidEdge mobileFirefox for AndroidOpera AndroidiOS SafariSamsung Internet
Basic support Yes Yes Yes


Yes — 171

Yes Yes ?

1. Before Firefox 17, a call to this method after the dispatching of the event raised an exception instead of doing nothing.

See also

  • The constructor to use instead of this deprecated method: Event(). More specific constructors can be used too.

Document Tags and Contributors

Last updated by: urty5656,