XmlTextReader::IsEmptyElement Property


Gets a value indicating whether the current node is an empty element (for example, <MyElement/>).

Namespace:   System.Xml
Assembly:  System.Xml (in System.Xml.dll)

property bool IsEmptyElement {
	virtual bool get() override;

Property Value

Type: System::Boolean

true if the current node is an element (NodeType equals XmlNodeType.Element) that ends with />; otherwise, false.


Starting with the .NET Framework 2.0, we recommend that you create XmlReader instances by using the XmlReader::Create method to take advantage of new functionality.

This property enables you to determine the difference between the following:

<item num="123"/> (IsEmptyElement is true).

<item num="123"> (IsEmptyElement is false, although element content is empty).

A corresponding EndElement node is not generated for empty elements.

IsEmptyElement simply reports whether or not the element in the source document had an end element tag.

The following example displays the text content of each element.

#using <System.Xml.dll>

using namespace System;
using namespace System::IO;
using namespace System::Xml;
int main()
   XmlTextReader^ reader = nullptr;

      //Load the reader with the XML file.
      reader = gcnew XmlTextReader( "elems.xml" );

      //Parse the XML and display the text content of each of the elements.
      while ( reader->Read() )
         if ( reader->IsStartElement() )
            if ( reader->IsEmptyElement )
                        Console::WriteLine( "<{0}/>", reader->Name );
               Console::Write( "<{0}> ", reader->Name );
               reader->Read(); //Read the start tag.
               if ( reader->IsStartElement() )

               //Handle nested elements.
               Console::Write( "\r\n<{0}>", reader->Name );
               Console::WriteLine( reader->ReadString() ); //Read the text content of the element.
      if ( reader != nullptr )


The example uses the file, elems.xml, as input.

  <title>Pride And Prejudice</title>

.NET Framework
Available since 1.1
Return to top