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Accurately remove and replace emojis in text strings

Project description


Accurately find or remove emojis from a blob of text.

License PyPI Status Python

Basic Usage

demoji requires an initial data download from the Unicode Consortium's emoji code repository.

On first use of the package, call download_codes():

>>> import demoji
>>> demoji.download_codes()
Downloading emoji data ...
... OK (Got response in 0.14 seconds)
Writing emoji data to /Users/brad/.demoji/codes.json ...
... OK

This will store the Unicode hex-notated symbols at ~/.demoji/codes.json for future use.

demoji exports several text-related functions for find-and-replace functionality with emojis:

>>> tweet = """\
... #startspreadingthenews yankees win great start by 🎅🏾 going 5strong innings with 5k’s🔥 🐂
... solo homerun 🌋🌋 with 2 solo homeruns and👹 3run homerun… 🤡 🚣🏼 👨🏽‍⚖️ with rbi’s … 🔥🔥
... 🇲🇽 and 🇳🇮 to close the game🔥🔥!!!….
... WHAT A GAME!!..
... """
>>> demoji.findall(tweet)
    "🔥": "fire",
    "🌋": "volcano",
    "👨🏽\u200d⚖️": "man judge: medium skin tone",
    "🎅🏾": "Santa Claus: medium-dark skin tone",
    "🇲🇽": "flag: Mexico",
    "👹": "ogre",
    "🤡": "clown face",
    "🇳🇮": "flag: Nicaragua",
    "🚣🏼": "person rowing boat: medium-light skin tone",
    "🐂": "ox",

See below for function API.

The reason that demoji requires a download rather than coming pre-packaged with Unicode emoji data is that the emoji list itself is frequently updated and changed. You are free to periodically update the local cache by calling demoji.download_codes() every so often.

To pull your last-downloaded date, you can use the last_downloaded_timestamp() helper:

>>> demoji.last_downloaded_timestamp()
datetime.datetime(2019, 2, 9, 7, 42, 24, 433776, tzinfo=<demoji.UTC object at 0x101b9ecf8>)

The result will be None if codes have not previously been downloaded.


Note: Text refers to typing.Text, an alias for str in Python 3 or unicode in Python 2.

download_codes() -> None

Download emoji data to ~/.demoji/codes.json. Required at first module usage, and can be used to periodically update data.

findall(string: Text) -> Dict[Text, Text]

Find emojis within string. Return a mapping of {emoji: description}.

findall_list(string: Text, desc: bool = True) -> List[Text]

Find emojis within string. Return a list (with possible duplicates).

If desc is True, the list contains description codes. If desc is False, the list contains emojis.

replace(string: Text, repl: Text = "") -> Text

Replace emojis in string with repl.

replace_with_desc(string: Text, sep: Text = ":") -> Text

Replace emojis in string with their description codes. The codes are surrounded by sep.

last_downloaded_timestamp() -> Optional[datetime.datetime]

Show the timestamp of last download from download_codes().

Footnote: Emoji Sequences

Numerous emojis that look like single Unicode characters are actually multi-character sequences. Examples:

  • The keycap 2️⃣ is actually 3 characters, U+0032 (the ASCII digit 2), U+FE0F (variation selector), and U+20E3 (combining enclosing keycap).
  • The flag of Scotland 7 component characters, b'\\U0001f3f4\\U000e0067\\U000e0062\\U000e0073\\U000e0063\\U000e0074\\U000e007f' in full esaped notation.

(You can see any of these through s.encode("unicode-escape").)

demoji is careful to handle this and should find the full sequences rather than their incomplete subcomponents.

The way it does this it to sort emoji codes by their length, and then compile a concatenated regular expression that will greedily search for longer emojis first, falling back to shorter ones if not found. This is not by any means a super-optimized way of searching as it has O(N2) properties, but the focus is on accuracy and completeness.

>>> from pprint import pprint
>>> seq = """\
... I bet you didn't know that 🙋, 🙋‍♂️, and 🙋‍♀️ are three different emojis.
... """
>>> pprint(seq.encode('unicode-escape'))  # Python 3
(b"I bet you didn't know that \\U0001f64b, \\U0001f64b\\u200d\\u2642\\ufe0f,"
 b' and \\U0001f64b\\u200d\\u2640\\ufe0f are three different emojis.\\n')



  • Update emoji source list to version 13.1. (See 5090eb5.)
  • Formally support Python 3.9. (See 6e9c34c.)
  • Bugfix: ensure that demoji.last_downloaded_timestamp() returns correct UTC time. (See 6c8ad15.)


  • Feature: add findall_list() and replace_with_desc() functions. (See 7cea333.)
  • Modernize setup config to use setup.cfg. (See 8f141e7.)


  • Tox: formally add Python 3.8 tests.


  • Windows: use the colorama package to support printing ANSI escape sequences on Windows; this introduces colorama as a dependency. (See cd343c1.)
  • Setup: Fix a bug in that would require dependencies to be installed prior to installation of demoji in order to find the __version__. (See d5f429c.)
  • Python 2 + Windows support: use, encoding='utf-8') consistently in (See 1efec5d.)
  • Distribution: use a universal wheel in PyPI release. (See 8636a32.)


  • Performance improvement: use re.escape() rather than failing to compile a small subset of codes.
  • Remove an unused constant in

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