S – attributed and L – attributed SDTs in Syntax directed translation

Before coming up to S-attributed and L-attributed SDTs, here is a brief intro to Synthesized or Inherited attributes

Types of attributes –
Attributes may be of two types – Synthesized or Inherited.

  1. Synthesized attributes –
    A Synthesized attribute is an attribute of the non-terminal on the left-hand side of a production. Synthesized attributes represent information that is being passed up the parse tree. The attribute can take value only from its children (Variables in the RHS of the production).

    For eg. let’s say A -> BC is a production of a grammar, and A’s attribute is dependent on B’s attributes or C’s attributes then it will be synthesized attribute.

  2. Inherited attributes –
    An attribute of a nonterminal on the right-hand side of a production is called an inherited attribute. The attribute can take value either from its parent or from its siblings (variables in the LHS or RHS of the production).

    For example, let’s say A -> BC is a production of a grammar and B’s attribute is dependent on A’s attributes or C’s attributes then it will be inherited attribute.

Now, let’s discuss about S-attributed and L-attributed SDT.



  1. S-attributed SDT :
    • If an SDT uses only synthesized attributes, it is called as S-attributed SDT.
    • S-attributed SDTs are evaluated in bottom-up parsing, as the values of the parent nodes depend upon the values of the child nodes.
    • Semantic actions are placed in rightmost place of RHS.
  2. L-attributed SDT: