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java – Configure Jackson to parse multiple date formats

Posted by: admin June 15, 2020 Leave a comment


I am working on a project where the date formats returned in JSON payloads aren’t consistent (that’s another issue all together). The project I’m working on uses Jackson to parse the JSON responses. Right now I’ve written a few de/serializers to handle it but it’s not elegant.

I want to know whether there’s a way to configure Jackson with a set of possible date formats to parse for a particular response rather than writing several separate deserializers for each format. Similar to how GSON handles the problem in this question

How to&Answers:

Here is a Jackson Multi Date Format Serializer.

import java.io.IOException;
import java.text.ParseException;
import java.text.SimpleDateFormat;
import java.util.Arrays;
import java.util.Date;

import com.fasterxml.jackson.core.JsonParseException;
import com.fasterxml.jackson.core.JsonParser;
import com.fasterxml.jackson.core.JsonProcessingException;
import com.fasterxml.jackson.databind.DeserializationContext;
import com.fasterxml.jackson.databind.JsonNode;
import com.fasterxml.jackson.databind.deser.std.StdDeserializer;

public class MultiDateDeserializer extends StdDeserializer<Date> {
    private static final long serialVersionUID = 1L;

    private static final String[] DATE_FORMATS = new String[] {
        "MMM dd, yyyy HH:mm:ss",
        "MMM dd, yyyy"

    public MultiDateDeserializer() {

    public MultiDateDeserializer(Class<?> vc) {

    public Date deserialize(JsonParser jp, DeserializationContext ctxt) throws IOException, JsonProcessingException {
        JsonNode node = jp.getCodec().readTree(jp);
        final String date = node.textValue();

        for (String DATE_FORMAT : DATE_FORMATS) {
            try {
                return new SimpleDateFormat(DATE_FORMAT).parse(date);
            } catch (ParseException e) {
        throw new JsonParseException(jp, "Unparseable date: \"" + date + "\". Supported formats: " + Arrays.toString(DATE_FORMATS));

You can use this simply by annotating a field as follows:

@JsonProperty("date") @JsonDeserialize(using = MultiDateDeserializer.class) final Date date,


In the meanwhile, an annotation became available for a much simpler solution:

public class DateStuff {
    @JsonFormat(shape=JsonFormat.Shape.STRING, pattern="yyyy-MM-dd,HH:00", timezone="CET")
    public Date creationTime;