The London Perl and Raku Workshop takes place on 26th Oct 2024. If your company depends on Perl, please consider sponsoring and/or attending.


CSS - Object oriented access to Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)


  use CSS;

  # create a CSS object with the default options  
  my $css = CSS->new();

  # create a CSS object with a specific parser
  my $css = CSS->new( { 'parser' => 'CSS::Parse::Lite' } );
  my $css = CSS->new( { 'parser' => 'CSS::Parse::Heavy' } );
  my $css = CSS->new( { 'parser' => 'CSS::Parse::Compiled' } );

  # create a CSS object with a specific adaptor
  my $css = CSS->new( { 'adaptor' => 'CSS::Adaptor' } );
  my $css = CSS->new( { 'adaptor' => 'CSS::Adaptor::Pretty' } );
  my $css = CSS->new( { 'adaptor' => 'CSS::Adaptor::Debug' } );

  # parse some CSS from a string
  $css->read_string( $css_data );
  $css->read_string( ( $css_data, $more_css_data ) );

  # parse some CSS from a file
  $css->read_file( 'my_file.css' );
  $css->read_file( ( 'my_file.css', 'my_other_file.css' ) );

  # output the CSS using the current adaptor
  print $css->output();

  # set a new adaptor and then output the CSS
  $css->set_adaptor( 'CSS::Adaptor::Foo' );
  print $css->output();

  # output the CSS using a tempory adaptor
  print $css->output( 'CSS::Adaptor::Bar' );

  # forget about the CSS we've already parsed


This module can be used, along with a CSS::Parse::* module, to parse CSS data and represent it as a tree of objects. Using a CSS::Adaptor::* module, the CSS data tree can then be transformed into other formats.


From version 1.00 of this module onwards, backwards compatibility is broken. This is due to large changes in the way data is parsed and then represented internally. Version 0.08 is still available on CPAN:


The CSS object is the head of the tree. It contains a list of CSS::Style objects which each represent a CSS ruleset. Each of these objects contains a list of selectors and properties. Each selector is stored as a CSS::Selector object. Each property object is stored as a CSS::Property object and contains a list of values. These values are stored as CSS::Value objects.

  foo, bar {
      baz: fop;
      woo: yay houpla;

The above example would be represented as a single CSS::Style object. That object would then have two CSS::Selector objects representing 'foo' and 'bar'. It would also have two CSS::Property objects representing 'baz' and 'woo'. The 'baz' object then has a single child CSS::Value object for 'fop', whilst the 'woo' object has two child objects for 'yay' and 'houpla'.



new() or new( { ..options.. } )

An optional hash can contain arguments:

  parser        module to use as the CSS parser
  adaptor       adaptor to use for output


read_file( $filename ) or read_file( @filenames )

Read one or mores files and parse the CSS within them.

read_string( $scalar ) or read_string( @strings )

Read one or more strings and parse the CSS within them.

output() or output( 'CSS::Adaptor::Foo' )

Return a string representation of the CSS tree, using either the current adaptor or the specified one.

set_adaptor( 'CSS::Adaptor::Bar' )

Set the current adaptor for the CSS tree.


Forget all the objects in the CSS tree;

get_style_by_selector( 'selector_name' )

Returns the first CSS::Style object with the specified selector name attached. Returns zero on failure.


Copyright (C) 2001-2002, Allen Day <>

Copyright (C) 2003-2004, Cal Henderson <>


CSS::Style, CSS::Selector, CSS::Property, CSS::Value, CSS::Parse, CSS::Parse::Lite, CSS::Parse::Heavy, CSS::Parse::Compiled, CSS::Parse::PRDGrammar, CSS::Adaptor, CSS::Adaptor::Pretty, CSS::Adaptor::Debug, perl(1)