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Raphaël SVG Import plugin

What is it?

An extension to the Raphael Vector Library.
It enables Raphael to import raw SVG data.

Fork Notes

This is a fork of raphael.svg-import. When the original raphael-svg-import reached 0.0.3, a major backwards-incompatible change was introduced. Instead of parsing SVG documents, it used regular expressions. This was undesirable for several reasons:

  • Used regular expressions to parse XML. Rebuilding something that browsers can do natively.
  • Loss of document structure. Groups (<g>) are lost.
  • Additional steps needed to load a svg file.


See demo.html for the full example. Use AJAX to retrieve your SVG file as an XML document. Then use importSVG() to convert the SVG into a raphael.js set:

    type: "GET",
    url: "assets/demo.svg",
    dataType: "xml",
    success: function(svgXML) {
      var paper = Raphael(10, 10, 800, 600);
      var newSet = paper.importSVG(svgXML);

If you want the Raphael paper dimensions to automatically match the SVG:

    type: "GET",
    url: "assets/demo.svg",
    dataType: "xml",
    success: function(svgXML) {
      var root = svgXML.getElementsByTagName('svg')[0].getAttribute('viewBox').split(' ');
      var width = root[2],
          height = root[3];
      var paper = Raphael(width, height);
      var newSet = paper.importSVG(svgXML);

If you want to import the SVG from an element within the page you can access to the element:

<svg id="mysvg" version="1.1" xmlns="" xmlns:xlink="" x="0px" y="0px" width="500px" height="500px" viewBox="0 0 500 500" enable-background="new 0 0 500 500" xml:space="preserve">
    <circle opacity="0.3" fill="#FF0000" enable-background="new" cx="251.5" cy="255.5" r="179"/>

And you can access to the svg element by its id:

var paper = Raphael(10, 10, 500, 500);
var newSet = paper.importSVG(document.getElementById('mysvg'));

In the assets folder a demo.svg file is provided.
Nothing fancy but it gives you a starting point.


Contributing to Raphael SVG Import Classic

  • Check out the latest master to make sure the feature hasn't been implemented or the bug hasn't been fixed yet
  • Check out the issue tracker to make sure someone already hasn't requested it and/or contributed it
  • Fork the project
  • Start a feature/bugfix branch
  • Commit and push until you are happy with your contribution
  • Make sure to add tests for it. This is important so I don't break it in a future version unintentionally.
  • You can contribute a broken test case without a fix



Open tests/qunit.html in your targeted browers. A command line version can be run based on webkit with grunt qunit. A hosted version can be found here.


Open tests/visual_tests.html in your targeted browsers. A hosted version can be found here.

Old IE testing

Follow the same instructions as above IE. When looking at the Qunit test in IE, all tests will fail, but the output should look the same as other browsers.

From the command line

$ grunt test
Running "jshint:all" (jshint) task
>> 2 files lint free.
Running "qunit:all" (qunit) task
Testing tests/qunit.html .............OK
>> 20 assertions passed (57ms)
Done, without errors


Copyright (c) 2015 Chris Chang Original Raphael SVG Import Copyright (c) 2009 Wout Fierens See LICENSE.txt for further details.

Final Notes

I've tried keeping all the files as close to the original as possible. So there are lots of files not relevant to this fork in the tree.

There is a bug in the minified version of of Raphael.js that most people use. It's best to just grab the uncompressed source and minify it yourself.