:empty Selector

empty selector

Description: Select all elements that have no children (including text nodes).

  • version added: 1.0jQuery( ":empty" )

This is the inverse of :parent.

One important thing to note with :empty (and :parent) is that child elements include text nodes.

The W3C recommends that the <p> element have at least one child node, even if that child is merely text (see https://www.w3.org/TR/html401/struct/text.html#edef-P). Some other elements, on the other hand, are empty (i.e. have no children) by definition: <input>, <img>, <br>, and <hr>, for example.


Finds all elements that are empty - they don't have child elements or text.

<!doctype html>
<html lang="en">
  <meta charset="utf-8">
  <title>empty demo</title>
  td {
    text-align: center;
  <script src="https://code.jquery.com/jquery-3.5.0.js"></script>
<table border="1">
  <tr><td>TD #0</td><td></td></tr>
  <tr><td>TD #2</td><td></td></tr>
$( "td:empty" )
  .text( "Was empty!" )
  .css( "background", "rgb(255,220,200)" );


© The jQuery Foundation and other contributors
Licensed under the MIT License.