A simple example of a set which is dense-in-itself but not closed (and hence not a perfect set) is the subset of irrational numbers (considered as a subset of the real numbers). This set is dense-in-itself because every neighborhood of an irrational number contains at least one other irrational number . On the other hand, this set of irrationals is not closed because every rational number lies in its closure. For similar reasons, the set of rational numbers (also considered as a subset of the real numbers) is also dense-in-itself but not closed.
The above examples, the irrationals and the rationals, are also dense sets in their topological space, namely . As an example that is dense-in-itself but not dense in its topological space, consider . This set is not dense in but is dense-in-itself.
- Steen, Lynn Arthur; Seebach, J. Arthur Jr. Counterexamples in Topology (Dover reprint of 1978 ed.). Berlin, New York: Springer-Verlag. p. 6. ISBN 978-0-486-68735-3. MR 0507446.