Python max() Function Explained with Examples

Last updated on: by Digamber
Python max() is a built-in function that returns the maximum value among the other arguments supplied to the function. If an iterable is passed as an argument in the max() function, then it checks all the items and returns the highest value. Point to be noted here, If you pass the string values then this function will do the alphabetical comparison.

Understand max() Syntax in Python

max (num1, num2, num3, ...)
num1, num2, num3, …The num value refers to the items to compare.

The max(iterable) Syntax

Iterable refers to any item whose values can be looped over or if we try to understand in laymen’s term any item which is used at the right side of the for-loop.

max(iterable, *[, key, default])
iterableIterable refers to the data collection, whose largest value is to be returned.
keyIt is an optional value, and it takes iterable as an argument. It makes the comparison based on the value returned by this function.
defaultThis is an optional parameter, and It orders an object to return when it returns empty. If you don’t pass the default value, then it throws ValueError exception.

Always the highest item of the iterable will be returned if we pass the iterable as a parameter. In case of multiple iterable declared as a parameter then the highest value of the list among other list items will be returned.

The max() Function Examples in Python

Find out how to get the highest numerical value among other numerical values using Python’s max() method.

x = max(9, 4, 6, 8, 7)
# output = 9
x = max(5, 10, 25, 99)
# output = 99

Get Largest Value from List using Python Max Function

In this example, we are going to get the largest value from the list using the max() method in Python 3. Find out in the given below code example how to to find out the maximum value in integer list or array.

numList = [30, 250, 140, 270, 60, 995, 200]
print("The Max Value in collection : ", max(numList))
# output = 995

Python Max Method Example with String List

In this final example, we are going to define a string collection. Then, we will use the Max function to return the highest value from the collection. Here, you’ll see that Max method will use alphabetical order to find out the maximum value in a List.

superHeroes = ['Iron Man', 'Hulk', 'Groot', 'Black Widow']
print("The Max Value in collection : ", max(superHeroes))
# output = Iron Man

Find Largest Value in Nested List using Python Max Function

In this final example, we are going to create a nested list, then we’ll check out the flexibility of max method in Python. The max function will look into the first value in every nested list and get us a maximum value. Without further ado let’s begin, check out the example below:

NestedList = [[2, 3], [19, 11], [22, 55]]
print("The Maximum Value : ", max(NestedList))
# output = [22, 55]


I am Digamber, a full-stack developer and fitness aficionado. I created this site to bestow my coding experience with newbie programmers. I love to write on JavaScript, ECMAScript, React, Angular, Vue, Laravel.