3/30/2013 - 1:11 AM

Example using the marked.js README

Example using the marked.js README


A full-featured markdown parser and compiler, written in javascript. Built for speed.


node v0.4.x

$ node test --bench
marked completed in 12071ms.
showdown (reuse converter) completed in 27387ms.
showdown (new converter) completed in 75617ms.
markdown-js completed in 70069ms.

node v0.6.x

$ node test --bench
marked completed in 6448ms.
marked (gfm) completed in 7357ms.
marked (pedantic) completed in 6092ms.
discount completed in 7314ms.
showdown (reuse converter) completed in 16018ms.
showdown (new converter) completed in 18234ms.
markdown-js completed in 24270ms.

Marked is now faster than Discount, which is written in C.

For those feeling skeptical: These benchmarks run the entire markdown test suite 1000 times. The test suite tests every feature. It doesn't cater to specific aspects.


$ npm install marked

Another Javascript Markdown Parser

The point of marked was to create a markdown compiler where it was possible to frequently parse huge chunks of markdown without having to worry about caching the compiled output somehow...or blocking for an unnecesarily long time.

marked is very concise and still implements all markdown features. It is also now fully compatible with the client-side.

marked more or less passes the official markdown test suite in its entirety. This is important because a surprising number of markdown compilers cannot pass more than a few tests. It was very difficult to get marked as compliant as it is. It could have cut corners in several areas for the sake of performance, but did not in order to be exactly what you expect in terms of a markdown rendering. In fact, this is why marked could be considered at a disadvantage in the benchmarks above.

Along with implementing every markdown feature, marked also implements GFM features.


marked has a few different switches which change behavior.

  • pedantic: Conform to obscure parts of as much as possible. Don't fix any of the original markdown bugs or poor behavior.
  • gfm: Enable github flavored markdown (enabled by default).
  • sanitize: Sanitize the output. Ignore any HTML that has been input.
  • highlight: A callback to highlight code blocks.
  • tables: Enable GFM tables. This is enabled by default. (Requires the gfm option in order to be enabled).
  • breaks: Enable GFM line breaks. Disabled by default.
  • smartLists: Use smarter list behavior than the original markdown. Disabled by default. May eventually be default with the old behavior moved into pedantic.
  • langPrefix: Set the prefix for code block classes. Defaults to lang-.


// Set default options
  gfm: true,
  tables: true,
  breaks: false,
  pedantic: false,
  sanitize: true,
  smartLists: true,
  langPrefix: 'language-',
  highlight: function(code, lang) {
    if (lang === 'js') {
      return highlighter.javascript(code);
    return code;
console.log(marked('i am using __markdown__.'));

You also have direct access to the lexer and parser if you so desire.

var tokens = marked.lexer(text, options);
var lexer = new marked.Lexer(options);
var tokens = lexer.lex(text);
$ node
> require('marked').lexer('> i am using marked.')
[ { type: 'blockquote_start' },
  { type: 'paragraph',
    text: 'i am using marked.' },
  { type: 'blockquote_end' },
  links: {} ]


$ marked -o hello.html
hello world
$ cat hello.html
<p>hello world</p>


Copyright (c) 2011-2013, Christopher Jeffrey. (MIT License)

See LICENSE for more info.