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Mastering Smart Contracts


This guide expects you to have some basic knowledge. If you are just starting, it is recommended to first check out this Tutorial: Deploying and Interacting with Smart Contracts.

Contract class​

The Contract class is the main object exported by the web3-eth-contract package. It is also available in the web3 package.

Importing the Contract Class​

To use the Contract class, you'll need to import it from one of two packages: directly from the web3-eth-contract package or from the web3 package.

Here's an example of importing from each:

// Importing from web3-eth-contract package
import { Contract } from 'web3-eth-contract';
const contract = new Contract(...);

// Importing from the main web3 package
import { Contract } from 'web3';
const contract = new Contract(...);

// Importing from the main web3 package from inside `web3.eth` namespace
import { Web3 } from 'web3';
const web3 = new Web3('');
const contract = new web3.eth.Contract(...);

// to set the provider for the contract instance:

Contract vs web3.eth.Contract​

There is a way to create a contract object, other than the ones listed above. That is by accessing an instance of Web3 object. And this instance of Web3 is usually called web3.

Actually, the web3.eth.Contract is typically how you access the class through a web3 instance that already has a provider setup and that may already has customized configurations.

  1. Importing the web3-eth-contract module can be beneficial if you want to reduce the size of your application instead of importing the whole Web3 module.

  2. Note the difference between Web3.eth.Contract and web3instance.eth.Contract (that is usually named web3.eth.Contract) is that the Web3 (with capital W) is used to access the objects organized in namespaces. While web3instance, that is usually named web3, is to access the properties of this instance.


import { Contract } from 'web3-eth-contract';

// instantiating Contract directly with provider URL from Contract package
// alternatively, you can instantiate the Contract without a provider and set it later using contract.setProvider()
const abi = [{...}];
const address = '0x...';
const contract = new Contract(abi, address { provider: '' });

// the provider can be set like this if not provided at the constructor:

// using Contract from a web3 instance
const web3 = new Web3('http://localhost:8545');
const contract = new web3.eth.Contract(abi, address);
// no need to pass the provider to this contract instance.
// because it will have the same provider of the web3 instance.

Constructor Parameters​

When you instantiate a Contract, you primarily provide one or two parameters, and sometimes 3 parameters:

  1. ABI (Application Binary Interface): The ABI tells the Contract how to format calls and transactions so that the contract can understand them.

If you do not know how to get the contract ABI, we recommend you to check the Step 4 at the # Step 4: Deploying and Interacting with Smart Contracts tutorial. And to look into the guide: Infer Contract Types from JSON Artifact.

  1. (optional) Contract Address: The Ethereum address at which your contract is deployed. If the contract is not deployed yet, do not pass a second parameter or pass undefined to it.

  2. (optional) Contract Options: you can provide contract options as a third parameter.

const abi = [{...}]; /* obtained ABI as an array */;
const address = '0x...'; // Deployed address of the contract

const myContract = new Contract(abi, address, {
defaultGasPrice: '20000000000', // default gas price in wei, 20 gwei in this case
defaultGas: 5000000, // provide the gas limit for transactions
//...other optional properties

Contract Properties and Methods​

The Contract class comes equipped with a range of properties and methods for contract interaction. We encourage you to check them at the Contract API Documentation section

Properties include​

  • config: The set of configurations for the contract instance that is defaults to the same values as the web3 object instance. But, it allows for using a different configurations for a specific contract instance. So, in most cases, you would use web3.eth.Contract and keep the configurations of the parent context (from the web3 instance). Except if there is something you need to handle differently for only a specific contract instance.

Here is an example on how to set a value of a specific config variable on a contract instance:

import {Web3} from 'web3';

// Set up a connection to a testnet or Ethereum network
const web3 = new Web3(new Web3.providers.HttpProvider('')); //or new Web3('')

// Create a new contract object using the ABI and bytecode
const abi = [{...}]
const myContract = new web3.eth.Contract(abi);
console.log(myContract.config.handleRevert); //false

// This will set `handleRevert` to `true` only on `myContract` instance:
myContract.handleRevert = true; // same as: myContract.config.handleRevert
console.log(myContract.config.handleRevert); //true

More on the config properties in the API documentation

  • options: The set of options for the contract instance. This options can be passed as the third parameter to the constructor. And can be accessed also later with contractInstance.options.
myContract.options = {
address: '0x1234567890123456789012345678901234567891',
from: '0xde0B295669a9FD93d5F28D9Ec85E40f4cb697BAe',
gasPrice: '10000000000000',
gas: 1000000

// If the smart contract is not deployed yet, the property `address` will be filled automatically after deployment succeed.
// If the smart contract is already deployed, you can set the `address`:
myContract.options.address = '0x1234567890123456789012345678901234567891';
// this is the same as the second parameter in the constructor:
// new Contract(abi, `address`);

// set default from address
myContract.options.from = '0x1234567890123456789012345678901234567891';
// set default gas price in wei
myContract.options.gasPrice = '20000000000000';
// set the gas limit
myContract.options.gas = 5000000;

// you can also use this to update the ABI of the contract
myContract.options.jsonInterface = [{...}]; // ABI
// this is the same as the first parameter in the Contract constructor:
// new Contract(`abi`, address)
  • methods: An object mapping your contract's methods for easy calling. This property provide a strongly typed methods depending on the passed ABI. And here is how to use it:
// note that the bellow METHOD_NAME and METHOD_PARAMETERS are 
// according to the early provided ABI.
// And TypeScript intellisense will help you with.

// to call a method by sending a transaction
// you need to specify the account (from) that will be used to sign and send the transaction
contract.methods.METHOD_NAME(METHOD_PARAMETERS).send({from: '0x...'});

// to call a view or pure method that does not send a transaction
  • events: An object mapping your contract's events, allowing you to subscribe to them.

    And here is an example on how to use it:

//If you want to filter events, create `options`:
const options: ContractEventOptions = {
// the following means all events where `myNumber` is `12` or `13`
filter: myNumber: [12,13];
// you can specify the block from where you like to start
// listing to events
fromBlock: 'earliest';

// You can also manually set the topics for the event filter.
// If given the filter property and event signature,
// (topic[0]) will not be set automatically.
// Each topic can also be a nested array of topics that behaves
// as `or` operation between the given nested topics.
topics?: ['0x617cf8a4400dd7963ed519ebe655a16e8da1282bb8fea36a21f634af912f54ab'];

// if you would like to not filter, don't pass `options`.
const event = await;

event.on('data', (data) => {
event.on('error', (err: Error) => {

To subscribe all events use the special allEvents:

const event = await;

Methods include​

  • deploy: For deploying a new contract instance.
// this will give you the accounts from the connected provider
// For example, if you are using MetaMask, it will be the account available.
const providersAccounts = await web3.eth.getAccounts();
const defaultAccount = providersAccounts[0];
console.log('deployer account:', defaultAccount);

// NOTE: If you want to manually unlock an account with a private key, you can use wallet.add(privateKey).
// however, exercise caution and ensure the security of your private keys.

// this is how to obtain the deployer function,
// so you can estimate its needed gas and deploy it.
const contractDeployer = myContract.deploy({
data: bytecode, // prefix the bytecode with '0x' if it is note already
arguments: [1], // provide the parameters in an array; in this case, it's the number `1`.

// optionally, estimate the gas that will be used for development and log it
const gas = await contractDeployer.estimateGas({
from: defaultAccount,
console.log('estimated gas:', gas);

// Deploy the contract to the Ganache network
const tx = await contractDeployer.send({
from: defaultAccount,
gasPrice: 10000000000,
console.log('Contract deployed at address: ' + tx.options.address);

If you do not know how to get the contract bytecode, we recommend you to check the Step 4 at the Deploying and Interacting with Smart Contracts tutorial.

  • getPastEvents: Gets past events for this contract. It differs from events properties that it returns the past events as an array, rather than allowing to subscribe to them like when using events properties. More on the API documentation

  • setProvider: This allows you to set a specific provider for a contract instance. As highlighted early in this guide, this is especially handy if you are importing the Contract object from web3-eth-contract and then you will need to set the provider while there is no web3 context to read the provider from.

// Importing from web3-eth-contract package
import { Contract } from 'web3-eth-contract';
const contract = new Contract(...);

// to set the provider for the contract instance

ABI and Bytecode​


The ABI is the Application Binary Interface ( ABI ) of a smart contract. Which defines the methods and variables that are available in a smart contract and which we can use to interact with that smart contract.

For example, for the following solidity code:

// SPDX-License-Identifier: MIT
pragma solidity 0.8.0;

contract MyContract {
uint256 public myNumber;

constructor(uint256 _myNumber) {
myNumber = _myNumber;

function setMyNumber(uint256 _myNumber) public {
myNumber = _myNumber;

Its ABI would be:

const abi = [
inputs: [{ internalType: 'uint256', name: '_myNumber', type: 'uint256' }],
stateMutability: 'nonpayable',
type: 'constructor',
inputs: [],
name: 'myNumber',
outputs: [{ internalType: 'uint256', name: '', type: 'uint256' }],
stateMutability: 'view',
type: 'function',
inputs: [{ internalType: 'uint256', name: '_myNumber', type: 'uint256' }],
name: 'setMyNumber',
outputs: [],
stateMutability: 'nonpayable',
type: 'function',
] as const


Bytecode results from the compilation of a Solidity code. Bytecode is generally compact numeric codes, constants, and other pieces of information. Where each instruction step is an operation which is referred to as β€œopcodes,” which are typically one-byte (eight-bits) long. This is why they’re called β€œbytecode”—one-byte opcodes. And this bytecode is usually represented as a long hex string similar to the following;

const bytecode = '0x60806040523480156100115760006000fd5b50604051610224380380610224...'

And as mentioned in the tips inside previous sections: If you do not know how to get the contract ABI and bytecode, we recommend you to check the Step 4 at the Deploying and Interacting with Smart Contracts tutorial.

Do I always need the contract ByteCode?​

The short answer is yes, only if you need to deploy the smart contract yourself. And below is more elaboration on this.

Basically, with every Contract instance, there are 2 cases. First case is when you want to deploy a smart contract. And in this case, you will need to provide the bytecode of this smart contract.

import {Contract} from 'web3-eth-contract';

const myContract = new Contract(abi, undefined, options);
// if there is no options to be passed you can write:
const myContract = new Contract(abi);

await myContract.deploy({
data: '0x' + bytecode,

// the smart contract constructor arguments in an array
arguments: [arg1, arg2],
from: someAccount,

// the contract address will be filled automatically here after deployment:

And the other case, is when you want to interact with an already deployed smart contract. In this scenario, you will need to provide the address of the already deployed smart contract.

import {Contract} from 'web3-eth-contract';

const myContract = new Contract(abi, smartContractAddress, options);
// if there is no options to be passed you can write:
const myContract = new Contract(abi, smartContractAddress);

Do I always need the contract ABI?​

The answer is yes, you need the ABI, especially if you want to enjoy TypeScript IntelliSense, and we strongly recommend doing so. The ABI informs your development environment about the contract's structure, allowing for improved code suggestions and type checking.

If you choose not to provide the ABI, you won't be able to interact with the contract's methods correctly, and you'll miss out on IntelliSense support.

const myContract = new Contract(abi, address || undefined, options);
// remember that address can be empty if the contract is not deployed yet.
// or you can set the address to directly interact with the contract.