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How to find the largest element in an array in Python

Gutha Vamsi Krishna

Given an array with numerical values, the largest element can be found in multiple ways.


Input: [20, 49, 1, 99]

Output: 99


We can use solve this problem in the following ways in Python:

  1. Using a for-in loop
  2. Using max()
  3. Using sort()

1. Using a for-in loop

  • We will use a for-in loop and a variable that stores the largest element to solve this.
  • Initialize a list lst with [20, 49, 1, 99].
  • Initialize the largest variable with the first element in the list.
  • Use the for-in loop to traverse every element in the list, and check if the current element i is greater than the value present in the largest variable.
  • If it is, then assign the value in i to the variable largest.
  • After the loop ends, largest will store the largest element in the list.
#initialize list
lst = [20, 49, 1, 99]

#initialize largest with first element
largest = lst[0]

#traverse the array
for i in lst:
    if i>largest:
        largest = i


2. Using max()

We will use Python’s built-in function max() to solve this problem.

  • We will pass the list lst as a parameter to the function max(), which returns the largest element in the list.
#initialize list
lst = [20, 49, 1, 99]

#returns largest element
largest = max(lst)

#print largest in the list

3. Using sort()

We will use the sort() method to solve this.

  • Initialize the list lst with [20, 99, 1, 49].
  • Sort the list lst with lst.sort(), which sorts the original list in ascending order.
  • Since it is in ascending order, the last element lst[-1] in the list is the largest. Print it.
#initialize list
lst = [20, 99, 1, 49]

#sort the list

#print last element which is largest



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