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Python Language Reference Manual
by Guido van Rossum and Fred L. Drake, Jr.
Paperback (6"x9"), 120 pages
ISBN 0954161785
RRP £12.95 ($19.95)

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6.9 The raise statement

raise_stmt "raise" [expression
["," expression ["," expression]]]

If no expressions are present, raise re-raises the last exception that was active in the current scope. If no exception is active in the current scope, a TypeError exception is raised indicating that this is an error (if running under IDLE, a Queue.Empty exception is raised instead).

Otherwise, raise evaluates the expressions to get three objects, using None as the value of omitted expressions. The first two objects are used to determine the type and value of the exception.

If the first object is an instance, the type of the exception is the class of the instance, the instance itself is the value, and the second object must be None.

If the first object is a class, it becomes the type of the exception. The second object is used to determine the exception value: If it is an instance of the class, the instance becomes the exception value. If the second object is a tuple, it is used as the argument list for the class constructor; if it is None, an empty argument list is used, and any other object is treated as a single argument to the constructor. The instance so created by calling the constructor is used as the exception value.

If a third object is present and not None, it must be a traceback object (see section 3.2), and it is substituted instead of the current location as the place where the exception occurred. If the third object is present and not a traceback object or None, a TypeError exception is raised. The three-expression form of raise is useful to re-raise an exception transparently in an except clause, but raise with no expressions should be preferred if the exception to be re-raised was the most recently active exception in the current scope.

Additional information on exceptions can be found in section 4.2, and information about handling exceptions is in section 7.4.

ISBN 0954161785Python Language Reference ManualSee the print edition