The :first-child CSS pseudo-class represents any element that is the first child element of its parent.


element:first-child { /* style properties */ }


Example 1

HTML Content

  <span>This span is limed!</span>
  <span>This span is not. :(</span>

CSS Content

span:first-child {
    background-color: lime;

... looks like ...

Example 2 - Using UL

HTML Content

  <li>List 1</li>
  <li>List 2</li>
  <li>List 3</li>

CSS Content


... looks like ...


Specification Status Comment
Selectors Level 4
The definition of ':first-child' in that specification.
Working Draft No change
Selectors Level 3
The definition of ':first-child' in that specification.
Recommendation Initial definition

Browser compatibility

Feature Chrome Firefox (Gecko) Internet Explorer Opera Safari
Basic support 4.0 3.0 (1.9) 7[1] 9.5 4
Feature Android Firefox Mobile (Gecko) IE Mobile Opera Mobile Safari Mobile
Basic support 1.0 1.0 (1.9.1) 7[1] 10.0 3.1

[1] Internet Explorer 7 doesn't update the styles when elements are added dynamically. In Internet Explorer 8, if an element is inserted dynamically by clicking on a link the first-child style isn't applied until the link loses focus.

See also

Document Tags and Contributors

 Last updated by: Sebastianz,