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max() and min() in Python

Last Updated : 17 Jun, 2021
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This article brings you a very interesting and lesser-known function of Python, namely max() and min(). Now when compared to their C++ counterpart, which only allows two arguments, that too strictly being float, int or char, these functions are not only limited to 2 elements, but can hold many elements as arguments and also support strings in their arguments, hence allowing to display lexicographically smallest or largest string as well. Detailed functionality are explained below.
 

This function is used to compute the maximum of the values passed in its argument and lexicographically largest value if strings are passed as arguments.
 

Syntax : 
max(a,b,c,..,key,default)
Parameters : 
a,b,c,.. :  similar type of data.
key : key function where the iterables are passed and comparison is performed
default : default value is passed if the given iterable is empty
Return Value : 
Returns the maximum of all the arguments.
Exceptions : 
Returns TypeError when conflicting types are compared.

 

Python3




# Python code to demonstrate the Application of
# min() and max()
 
# printing the word occurring 1st among these in dict.
# "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming"
print("The word occurring 1st in dict. among given is : ",end="")
print (min( "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming" ) )
 
# printing the word occurring last among these in dict.
# "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming"
print("The word occurring last in dict. among given is : ",end="")
print (max( "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming" ) )


Output : 
 

Maximum of 4,12,43.3,19 and 100 is : 100

 

This function is used to compute the minimum of the values passed in its argument and lexicographically smallest value if strings are passed as arguments.
 

Syntax : 
min(a,b,c,.., key,default)
Parameters : 
a,b,c,.. :  similar type of data.
key : key function where the iterables are passed and comparison is performed
default : default value is passed if the given iterable is empty
Return Value : 
Returns the minimum of all the arguments.
Exceptions : 
Returns TypeError when conflicting types are compared.

 

Python3





Output : 
 

Minimum of 4,12,43.3,19 and 100 is : 4

 

Exception

1. TypeError : These functions throw TypeError when conflicting data types are compared.
 

Python3




# Python code to demonstrate the Exception of
# min() and max()
 
# printing the minimum of 4,12,43.3,19, "GeeksforGeeks"
# Throws Exception
print("Minimum of 4,12,43.3,19 and GeeksforGeeks is : ",end="")
print (min( 4,12,43.3,19,"GeeksforGeeks" ) )


Output : 
 

Minimum of 4,12,43.3,19 and GeeksforGeeks is : 

Runtime Error : 
 

Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "/home/b5da1d7f834a267f94fbbefe1b31a83c.py", line 7, in 
    print (min( 4,12,43.3,19,"GeeksforGeeks" ) )
TypeError: unorderable types: str() < int()

 

Practical Application

One of the practical application among many are finding lexicographically largest and smallest of Strings i.e String appearing first in dictionary or last.
 

Python3




# Python code to demonstrate the Application of
# min() and max()
 
# printing the word occurring 1st among these in dict.
# "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming"
print("The word occurring 1st in dict. among given is : ",end="")
print (min( "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming" ) )
 
# printing the word occurring last among these in dict.
# "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming"
print("The word occurring last in dict. among given is : ",end="")
print (max( "geeks", "manjeet", "algorithm", "programming" ) )


Output : 
 

The word occurring 1st in dict. among given is : algorithm
The word occurring last in dict. among given is : programming

 



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