lxml is the most feature-rich and easy-to-use library for processing XML and HTML in the Python language.
The lxml XML toolkit is a Pythonic binding for the C libraries libxml2 and libxslt. It is unique in that it combines the speed and XML feature completeness of these libraries with the simplicity of a native Python API, mostly compatible but superior to the well-known ElementTree API. The latest release works with all CPython versions from 2.4 to 3.2. See the introduction for more information about background and goals of the lxml project. Some common questions are answered in the FAQ.
Most people who use lxml do so because they like using it. If you want to show us that you like it, please blog about your experience with it, link to the project website, or send us a flattr.
However, if you are using lxml for your work and feel like giving a bit of your own benefit back to support the project, consider sending us money through PayPal that we can use for fixing bugs in the software and improving its features and documentation. Please read the Legal Notice below, at the bottom of this page. Thank you for your support.
Note that Flattr keeps 10% of the money for itself, so do not send any larger amounts through Flattr. Use PayPal for donations instead, or contact Stefan Behnel for other ways to support the lxml project, as well as commercial consulting, customisations and trainings on lxml and fast Python XML processing.
lxml.etree follows the ElementTree API as much as possible, building it on top of the native libxml2 tree. If you are new to ElementTree, start with the lxml.etree tutorial for XML processing. See also the ElementTree compatibility overview and the ElementTree performance page comparing lxml to the original ElementTree and cElementTree implementations.
Right after the lxml.etree tutorial for XML processing and the ElementTree documentation, the next place to look is the lxml.etree specific API documentation. It describes how lxml extends the ElementTree API to expose libxml2 and libxslt specific XML functionality, such as XPath, Relax NG, XML Schema, XSLT, and c14n. Python code can be called from XPath expressions and XSLT stylesheets through the use of XPath extension functions. lxml also offers a SAX compliant API, that works with the SAX support in the standard library.
In addition to the ElementTree API, lxml also features a sophisticated API for custom XML element classes. This is a simple way to write arbitrary XML driven APIs on top of lxml. lxml.etree also has a C-level API that can be used to efficiently extend lxml.etree in external C modules, including fast custom element class support.
The best way to download lxml is to visit lxml at the Python Package Index (PyPI). It has the source that compiles on various platforms. The source distribution is signed with this key. Binary builds for MS Windows usually become available through PyPI a few days after a source release. If you can't wait, consider trying a less recent release version first.
Please take a look at the installation instructions!
This complete web site (including the generated API documentation) is part of the source distribution, so if you want to download the documentation for offline use, take the source archive and copy the doc/html directory out of the source tree.
It's also possible to check out the latest development version of lxml from github directly, using a command like this (assuming you use hg and have hg-git installed):
hg clone https://github.com/lxml/lxml.git lxml
You can also browse the source repository and its history through the web. Please read how to build lxml from source first. The latest CHANGES of the developer version are also accessible. You can check there if a bug you found has been fixed or a feature you want has been implemented in the latest trunk version.
Questions? Suggestions? Code to contribute? We have a mailing list.
lxml uses the launchpad bug tracker. If you are sure you found a bug in lxml, please file a bug report there. If you are not sure whether some unexpected behaviour of lxml is a bug or not, please check the documentation and ask on the mailing list first. Do not forget to search the archive (e.g. with Gmane)!
Any donation that you make to the lxml project is voluntary and is not a fee for any services, goods, or advantages. By making a donation to the lxml project, you acknowledge that we have the right to use the money you donate in any lawful way and for any lawful purpose we see fit and we are not obligated to disclose the way and purpose to any party unless required by applicable law. Although lxml is free software, to the best of our knowledge the lxml project does not have any tax exempt status. The lxml project is neither a registered non-profit corporation nor a registered charity in any country. Your donation may or may not be tax-deductible; please consult your tax advisor in this matter. We will not publish or disclose your name and/or e-mail address without your consent, unless required by applicable law. Your donation is non-refundable.