Last updated 2024-06-19 06:16:12

What Is A Closure In Programming?

A closure is an important concept in programming, especially in languages like JavaScript.

Understanding closures can help you write better and more effective code. So, what exactly is a closure?

In simple terms, a closure is a function [โ†’] that remembers the environment in which it was created. This means that a closure has access to variables from its own scope, the outer functionโ€™s scope, and the global scope.


Letโ€™s look at an example to make this clearer:

01: function outerFunction() { 02: let outerVariable = 'I am outside!'; 03: 04: function innerFunction() { 05: console.log(outerVariable); 06: } 07: 08: return innerFunction; 09: } 10: 11: const myClosure = outerFunction(); 12: myClosure(); // Output: I am outside!

In the example above, innerFunction is a closure. It has access to outerVariable even after outerFunction has finished executing. This is because innerFunction remembers the scope in which it was created.

Closures are powerful because they allow you to create functions with private variables. Hereโ€™s an example:

01: function createCounter() { 02: let count = 0; 03: 04: return function() { 05: count++; 06: return count; 07: } 08: } 09: 10: const counter = createCounter(); 11: console.log(counter()); // Output: 1 12: console.log(counter()); // Output: 2 13: console.log(counter()); // Output: 3

In this example, createCounter returns a function that increments and returns the count variable. This count variable is private to the function returned by createCounter, and it can only be accessed and modified through this function.

Closures are used in many programming patterns and techniques. For example:

  1. Data Hiding: Closures allow you to hide variables from the outside world, making them private to the function.
  2. Callback Functions: Closures are often used in asynchronous programming for callbacks [โ†’], allowing the callback function to access the outer functionโ€™s variables.
  3. Event Handlers: In event-driven programming, closures help manage the state and behavior of event handlers.

Understanding closures is an important part of mastering JavaScript and other languages that support this feature. They provide a way to maintain state and create more modular and maintainable code.


In summary, a closure is a function that retains access to its own scope, the scope of the outer function, and the global scope. This feature allows for powerful programming patterns like data hiding and state management. By using closures effectively, you can write cleaner, more efficient code.

Here is another article you might like ๐Ÿ˜Š "What Is Hoisting?"