The read-only Node.nodeType property is an integer that identifies what the node is. It distinguishes different kind of nodes from each other, such as elements, text and comments.


var type = node.nodeType;

Returns an integer which specifies the type of the node. Possible values are listed in Node type constants.


Node type constants

Constant Value Description
Node.ELEMENT_NODE 1 An Element node like <p> or <div>.
Node.TEXT_NODE 3 The actual Text inside an Element or Attr.
Node.CDATA_SECTION_NODE 4 A CDATASection, such as <!CDATA[[ … ]]>.
Node.PROCESSING_INSTRUCTION_NODE 7 A ProcessingInstruction of an XML document, such as <?xml-stylesheet … ?>.
Node.COMMENT_NODE 8 A Comment node, such as <!-- … -->.
Node.DOCUMENT_NODE 9 A Document node.
Node.DOCUMENT_TYPE_NODE 10 A DocumentType node, such as <!DOCTYPE html>.
Node.DOCUMENT_FRAGMENT_NODE 11 A DocumentFragment node.

Deprecated node type constants

The following constants have been deprecated and should not be used anymore.

Constant Value Description
Node.ATTRIBUTE_NODE 2 An Attribute of an Element. Attributes no longer implement the Node interface as of DOM4.
Node.ENTITY_REFERENCE_NODE 5 An XML Entity Reference node, such as &foo;. Removed in DOM4.
Node.ENTITY_NODE 6 An XML <!ENTITY …> node. Removed in DOM4.
Node.NOTATION_NODE 12 An XML <!NOTATION …> node. Removed in DOM4.


Different types of nodes

document.nodeType === Node.DOCUMENT_NODE; // true
document.doctype.nodeType === Node.DOCUMENT_TYPE_NODE; // true

document.createDocumentFragment().nodeType === Node.DOCUMENT_FRAGMENT_NODE; // true

var p = document.createElement("p");
p.textContent = "Once upon a time…";

p.nodeType === Node.ELEMENT_NODE; // true
p.firstChild.nodeType === Node.TEXT_NODE; // true


This example checks if the first node inside the document element is a comment, and displays a message if not.

var node = document.documentElement.firstChild;
if (node.nodeType !== Node.COMMENT_NODE) {
  console.warn("You should comment your code!");


Specification Status Comment
The definition of 'Node.nodeType' in that specification.
Document Object Model (DOM) Level 3 Core Specification
The definition of 'Node.nodeType' in that specification.
Obsolete No changes.
Document Object Model (DOM) Level 2 Core Specification
The definition of 'Node.nodeType' in that specification.
Obsolete No changes.
Document Object Model (DOM) Level 1 Specification
The definition of 'Node.nodeType' in that specification.
Obsolete Initial definition.

Browser compatibility

Update compatibility data on GitHub
ChromeEdgeFirefoxInternet ExplorerOperaSafariAndroid webviewChrome for AndroidFirefox for AndroidOpera for AndroidSafari on iOSSamsung Internet
nodeTypeChrome Full support YesEdge Full support 12Firefox Full support YesIE ? Opera Full support YesSafari Full support YesWebView Android Full support YesChrome Android Full support YesFirefox Android Full support YesOpera Android Full support YesSafari iOS Full support YesSamsung Internet Android Full support Yes


Full support  
Full support
Compatibility unknown  
Compatibility unknown