< cpp‎ | iterator
Iterator library
Iterator concepts
Iterator primitives
Algorithm concepts and utilities
Indirect callable concepts
Common algorithm requirements
Iterator adaptors
Range access
Defined in header <iterator>
template< class Iter >
class reverse_iterator;

std::reverse_iterator is an iterator adaptor that reverses the direction of a given iterator, which must be at least a LegacyBidirectionalIterator or model bidirectional_iterator(since C++20). In other words, when provided with a bidirectional iterator, std::reverse_iterator produces a new iterator that moves from the end to the beginning of the sequence defined by the underlying bidirectional iterator.

For a reverse iterator r constructed from an iterator i, the relationship &*r == &*(i - 1) is always true (as long as r is dereferenceable); thus a reverse iterator constructed from a one-past-the-end iterator dereferences to the last element in a sequence.

This is the iterator returned by member functions rbegin() and rend() of the standard library containers.



[edit] Member types

Member type Definition
iterator_type Iter
iterator_category std::iterator_traits<Iter>::iterator_category
value_type std::iterator_traits<Iter>::value_type
difference_type std::iterator_traits<Iter>::difference_type
pointer std::iterator_traits<Iter>::pointer
reference std::iterator_traits<Iter>::reference
(until C++20)
Member type Definition
iterator_type Iter
iterator_concept If Iter models std::random_access_iterator, this is std::random_access_iterator_tag. Otherwise, this is std::bidirectional_iterator_tag
iterator_category If std::iterator_traits<Iter>::iterator_category models std::derived_from<std::random_access_iterator_tag>, this is std::random_access_iterator_tag. Otherwise, this is std::iterator_traits<Iter>::iterator_category
value_type std::iter_value_t<Iter>
difference_type std::iter_difference_t<Iter>
pointer std::iterator_traits<Iter>::pointer
reference std::iter_reference_t<Iter>
(since C++20)

Member types iterator_category, value_type, difference_type, pointer and reference are required to be obtained by inheriting from std::iterator<

(until C++17)

[edit] Member functions

constructs a new iterator adaptor
(public member function) [edit]
assigns another iterator adaptor
(public member function) [edit]
accesses the underlying iterator
(public member function) [edit]
accesses the pointed-to element
(public member function) [edit]
accesses an element by index
(public member function) [edit]
advances or decrements the iterator
(public member function) [edit]

[edit] Member objects

Member name Definition
current (protected) the underlying iterator of which base() returns a copy

[edit] Non-member functions

compares the underlying iterators
(function template) [edit]
advances the iterator
(function template) [edit]
computes the distance between two iterator adaptors
(function template) [edit]
casts the result of dereferencing the adjusted underlying iterator to its associated rvalue reference type
(function) [edit]
swaps the objects pointed to by two adjusted underlying iterators
(function template) [edit]
creates a std::reverse_iterator of type inferred from the argument
(function template) [edit]

[edit] Helper templates

template< class Iterator1, class Iterator2 >

    requires (!std::sized_sentinel_for<Iterator1, Iterator2>)
inline constexpr bool disable_sized_sentinel_for<

    std::reverse_iterator<Iterator2>> = true;
(since C++20)

This partial specialization of std::disable_sized_sentinel_for prevents specializations of reverse_iterator from satisfying sized_sentinel_for if their underlying iterators do not satisfy the concept.

[edit] Possible implementation

Below is a partial implementation focusing on the way the inner iterator is stored, calling std::prev only when the content is fetched via operator*.

template<class It>
class reverse_iterator
    It current = It();
    reverse_iterator() = default;
    constexpr explicit reverse_iterator(It itr) : current(itr) {}
    template<class U>
        requires (!std::is_same_v<U, It> && std::convertible_to<const U&, It>)
    constexpr explicit reverse_iterator(const U& other) : current(other.base()) {}
    constexpr decltype(auto) operator*() const
        return *std::prev(current); // <== returns the content of prev
    constexpr reverse_iterator& operator++() { --current; return *this; }
    constexpr reverse_iterator operator++(int) { auto tmp = *this; ++(*this); return tmp; }
    constexpr reverse_iterator& operator--() { ++current; return *this; }
    constexpr reverse_iterator operator--(int) { auto tmp = *this; --(*this); return tmp; }
    constexpr It base() const { return current; }
    // Other member functions, friend functions, and member typedefs are not shown here.

[edit] Notes

std::reverse_iterator does not work with iterators whose dereference returns a reference to a member of *this (so-called "stashing iterators"). An example of a stashing iterator is MSVC STL's std::filesystem::path::iterator.

[edit] Example

#include <cstddef>
#include <iostream>
#include <iterator>
template<typename T, std::size_t SIZE>
class Stack
    T arr[SIZE];
    std::size_t pos = 0;
    T pop()
        return arr[--pos];
    Stack& push(const T& t)
        arr[pos++] = t;
        return *this;
    // we wish that looping on Stack would be in LIFO order
    // thus we use std::reverse_iterator as an adaptor to existing iterators
    // (which are in this case the simple pointers: [arr, arr + pos)
    auto begin() { return std::reverse_iterator(arr + pos); }
    auto end() { return std::reverse_iterator(arr); }
int main()
    Stack<int, 8> s;
    for (int val : s)
        std::cout << val << ' ';
    std::cout << '\n';


35 25 15 5

[edit] See also

creates a std::reverse_iterator of type inferred from the argument
(function template) [edit]
(deprecated in C++17)
base class to ease the definition of required types for simple iterators
(class template) [edit]