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The Python min() function is used to return smallest element in an iterable. An iterable object can be any data structure like list, tuple, set, string and dictionary etc. The range() function can also be used as an iterable.

Syntax

#to compare one or more elements
min(n1, n2, n3, .....)

#to compare all elements of an iterable
min(iterable)

Parameters

iterable Required. iterable object like list, tuple, set, string , dictionary and range() etc.

Example: min() function applied on numerical iterable

In the below example, min() function is used to find out the smallest element in a given iterable.

MyList = [10, 5, 15, 20, 25, 30]
print(min(MyList))

MyRange = range(10, -5, -1)
print(min(MyRange))

x = min(10, 0, 14, 18, 20, 30)
print(x)

The output of the above code will be:

5

-4

0

Example: min() function applied on a string iterable

When min() function is applied on a string iterable, it returns smallest value, ordered alphabetically.

MyList = ['Marry', 'Sam', 'John', 'Joe']
print(min(MyList))

The output of the above code will be:

Joe

❮ Python Built-in Functions