A structure is a data type that allows you to combine several other data types into one with unique names for each.

Suppose you want to store information about a person. You need to store the name and age.

You can define a Person struct with two fields: name and age:

struct Person { name string age int }

In V, structures are specified using the struct keyword. Each field must have a unique name and type.

To instantiate a struct, use a struct literal:

p := Person{ name: 'Bob' age: 20 }

Fields can be initialized in any order or omitted when they are created.

There is also a short syntax for instantiating structures:

p := Person{'Bob', 20}

To refer to a structure field, use a dot:

p := Person{ name: 'Bob' age: 20 } println( // Bob


Access/mutability modifiers

As already described above, structures can have fields. By default, all fields are immutable and private. Privacy means that access to them will be only within the current module.

Fields access modifiers can be changed with pub and mut keywords. In total, there are 5 possible options:

struct Foo { a int // private immutable (default) mut: b int // private mutable c int // (you can list multiple fields with the same access modifier) pub: d int // public immutable (readonly) pub mut: e int // public, but mutable only in parent module __global: // (not recommended to use, that's why the 'global' keyword starts with __) f int // public and mutable both inside and outside parent module }

Default field values

All struct fields are zeroed by default during the creation of the struct. Array and map fields are allocated.

struct Foo { num int // 0 by default str string // '' by default arr []int // `[]int{}` by default mp map[string]int // `map[string]int{}` by default }

To set a default value for a field, use = after the field type:

struct Foo { num int = 42 }

Required fields

As already described earlier, when creating an instance of a structure, fields can be omitted. To mark some fields as required, use [required] attribute:

struct Foo { n int [required] }


Structs can also have methods. To set them, a special syntax is used:

struct Person { name string age int } fn (p Person) say_hi() { println('Hi, my name is ${}') }

Before the function name, a new parameter is added called receiver. It defines the type of the structure that the method belongs to, as well as the name of the variable, through which you can access an instance of the structure on which the method is called.

By convention, the receiver name should not be self or this. It is better to use a short, preferably one-letter, name.

Just like accessing the fields of a structure, a dot is used:

struct Person { name string age int } fn (p Person) say_hi() { println('Hi, my name is ${}') } p := Person{ name: 'Bob' age: 20 } p.say_hi() // Hi, my name is Bob

Methods must be declared in the same module as the struct.

Reference receiver

In the example above, we declared the receiver as p Person. This means that the method will be called on a copy of the structure. To call a method on the original structure, you need to use & before the receiver type:

struct Person { name string age int } fn (p &Person) say_hi() { println('Hi, my name is ${}') } p := Person{ name: 'Bob' age: 20 } p.say_hi() // Hi, my name is Bob

In this case, an instance of the structure will be passed to the method by reference.

This can be useful for large structures where copying them can be an expensive operation. Note that although a struct is passed by reference, you cannot change the fields of a struct within a method, even if they are marked mut.

Mutable receivers

By default, struct fields cannot be changed in methods, even if the field itself is marked as mut. The following code will not be compiled:

struct Person { mut: name string age int } fn (p Person) birthday() { p.age++ //^^^^^ error: `p` is immutable, declare it with `mut` to make it mutable }

To change the fields of a structure in a method, you need to add mut before the name of the receiver:

struct Person { mut: name string age int } fn (mut p Person) birthday() { p.age++ }

In this case, we can freely change the mutable fields of the structure inside the method. Such methods can only be called on mutable struct instances:

mut mut_person := Person{ name: 'Bob' age: 20 } immut_person := Person{ name: 'Bob' age: 20 } mut_person.birthday() // ok immut_person.birthday() //^^^^^^^^^^ `immut_person` is immutable, declare it with `mut` to make it mutable

Note that in this case the receiver becomes implicitly referential, i.e., its type becomes &Person instead of Person. This means that the structure instance will not be copied when the method is called, but a pointer to it will be passed.

The mut p &Person entry is currently prohibited.

Static methods

Structs can also have static methods. To set them, a special syntax is used:

struct Node {} struct Tree { root &Node } fn &Tree { // ^^^^ // structure name to which the static method belongs return &Tree{} }

Static methods are defined for the structure, not for the instance of the structure. This means that you do not need to instantiate the struct to call a static method.

tree :=

With static methods, you can create separate namespaces for functions that operate on a particular structure.

Using static methods, you can prevent cluttering the module's scope with unnecessary functions that are not required independently from the structure.


Unlike other languages, V does not have the concept of constructors. But you can use static methods to simulate a constructor.

By convention, such methods are called new:

struct Person { name string age int is_adult bool } fn string, age int) Person { return Person{ name: name age: age is_adult: age >= 18 } }

Calling such a method is no different from calling a static method:

p :='Bob', 20)

See also noinit structs.

Allocate structs on the heap

Structs are allocated on the stack. To allocate a struct on the heap and get a reference to it, use the & prefix:

struct Point { x int y int } p := &Point{10, 10} // References have the same syntax for accessing fields println(p.x)

See also Stack and Heap

Always heap allocated structs

For some structures, you may want them to always be allocated on the heap. You can use attribute [heap] for this:

[heap] struct Point { x int y int } p := Point{10, 10} println(p.x)

Struct update syntax

V provides a convenient syntax for changing the fields of a structure.

struct User { name string age int is_registered bool } fn register(u User) User { return User{ ...u is_registered: true } } mut user := User{ name: 'Bob' age: 20 } user = register(user) println(user) // User{ // name: 'Bob' // age: 20 // is_registered: true // }

The passed structure will be copied, and only those fields specified in the update syntax after the ...u will be changed in the copy.

Trailing struct literal arguments

V does not have default function arguments or named arguments, for that trailing struct literal syntax can be used instead:

[params] struct ButtonConfig { text string is_disabled bool width int = 70 height int = 20 } struct Button { text string width int height int } fn new_button(c ButtonConfig) &Button { return &Button{ width: c.width height: c.height text: c.text } } button := new_button(text: 'Click me', width: 100) // the height is not set, so it will be 20 by default assert button.height == 20

As you can see, both the struct name and braces can be omitted, instead of:

new_button(ButtonConfig{text: 'Click me', width: 100})

you can just write:

new_button(text: 'Click me', width: 100)

This only works for functions that take a struct for the last argument.

[params] attribute is used to tell V that the trailing struct parameter can be omitted entirely, so that you can write button := new_button(). Without it, you have to specify at least one of the field names, even if it has its default value, otherwise the compiler will produce this error message, when you call the function with no parameters:

error: expected 1 arguments, but got 0

[noinit] structs

V supports [noinit] structs, which are structs that cannot be initialised outside the module they are defined in. They are either meant to be used internally or they can be used externally through factory functions.

For an example, consider the following source in a directory sample:

[noinit] pub struct Information { pub: data string } pub fn new_information(data string) !Information { if data.len == 0 || data.len > 100 { return error('data must be between 1 and 100 characters') } return Information{ data: data } }

Note that new_information is a factory function. Now when we want to use this struct outside the module:

import sample fn main() { // This doesn't work when the [noinit] attribute is present: // info := sample.Information{ // data: 'Sample information.' // } // Use this instead: info := sample.new_information('Sample information.')! println(info) }

See also constructors.

Structs with reference fields

Structs with references require explicitly setting the initial value to a reference value unless the struct already defines its own initial value.

Zero-value references, or nil pointers will NOT be supported in the future, for now data structures such as Linked Lists or Binary Trees that rely on reference fields that can use the value 0, understanding that it is unsafe, and that it can cause a panic.

struct Node { a &Node b &Node = unsafe { nil } // Auto-initialized to nil, use with caution! } // Reference fields must be initialized unless an initial value is declared. foo := Node{ a: unsafe { nil } } bar := Node{ a: &foo } baz := Node{ a: unsafe { nil } b: unsafe { nil } } qux := Node{ a: &foo b: &bar } println(baz) println(qux)

Anonymous structs

V supports anonymous structs: structs that do not have to be declared separately with a struct name.

struct Book { author struct { name string age int } title string } book := Book{ author: struct { name: 'Samantha Black' age: 24 } } println( // Samantha Black println( // 24