On this page:
define
define-values
define-syntax
define-syntaxes
define-for-syntax
define-values-for-syntax
2.14.1 require Macros
define-require-syntax
2.14.2 provide Macros
define-provide-syntax
Version: 4.2.1

2.14 Definitions: define, define-syntax, ...

Definitions: define in Guide: PLT Scheme introduces definitions.

(define id expr)
(define (head args) body ...+)
 
head = id
  | (head args)
     
args = arg ...
  | arg ... . rest-id
     
arg = arg-id
  | [arg-id default-expr]
  | keyword arg-id
  | keyword [arg-id default-expr]
The first form binds id to the result of expr, and the second form binds id to a procedure. In the second case, the generation procedure is (CVT (head args) body ...+), using the CVT meta-function defined as follows:

  (CVT (id . kw-formals) . datum)   = (lambda kw-formals . datum)
  (CVT (head . kw-formals) . datum) = (lambda kw-formals expr)
                                       if (CVT head . datum) = expr

At the top level, the top-level binding id is created after evaluating expr, if it does not exist already, and the top-level mapping of id (in the namespace linked with the compiled definition) is set to the binding at the same time.

Examples:

  (define x 10)
  > x

  10

  (define (f x)
    (+ x 1))

 

  > (f 10)

  11

  (define ((f x) [y 20])
    (+ x y))

 

  > ((f 10) 30)

  40

  > ((f 10))

  30

(define-values (id ...) expr)
Evaluates the expr, and binds the results to the ids, in order, if the number of results matches the number of ids; if expr produces a different number of results, the exn:fail:contract exception is raised.

At the top level, the top-level binding for each id is created after evaluating expr, if it does not exist already, and the top-level mapping of each id (in the namespace linked with the compiled definition) is set to the binding at the same time.

Examples:

  (define-values () (values))
  (define-values (x y z) (values 1 2 3))
  > z

  3

(define-syntax id expr)
(define-syntax (head args) body ...+)
The first form creates a transformer binding (see Transformer Bindings) of id with the value of expr, which is an expression at phase level 1 relative to the surrounding context. (See Identifiers and Binding for information on phase levels.) Evaluation of expr side is parameterized to set current-namespace as in let-syntax.

The second form is a shorthand the same as for define; it expands to a definition of the first form where the expr is a lambda form.

Examples:

  > (define-syntax foo
      (syntax-rules ()
        ((_ a ...)
         (printf "~a\n" (list a ...)))))
  > (foo 1 2 3 4)

  (1 2 3 4)

  > (define-syntax (bar syntax-object)
      (syntax-case syntax-object ()
        ((_ a ...)
         #'(printf "~a\n" (list a ...)))))
  > (bar 1 2 3 4)

  (1 2 3 4)

(define-syntaxes (id ...) expr)
Like define-syntax, but creates a transformer binding for each id. The expr should produce as many values as ids, and each value is bound to the corresponding id.

Examples:

  > (define-syntaxes (foo1 foo2 foo3)
      (let ([transformer1 (lambda (syntax-object)
                            (syntax-case syntax-object ()
                              [(_) #'1]))]
            [transformer2 (lambda (syntax-object)
                            (syntax-case syntax-object ()
                              [(_) #'2]))]
            [transformer3 (lambda (syntax-object)
                            (syntax-case syntax-object ()
                              [(_) #'3]))])
        (values transformer1
                transformer2
                transformer3)))
  > (foo1)

  1

  > (foo2)

  2

  > (foo3)

  3

(define-for-syntax id expr)
(define-for-syntax (head args) body ...+)
Like define, except that the binding is at phase level 1 instead of phase level 0 relative to its context. The expression for the binding is also at phase level 1. (See Identifiers and Binding for information on phase levels.) Evaluation of expr side is parameterized to set current-namespace as in let-syntax.

Examples:

  > (define-for-syntax foo 2)
  > (define-syntax bar
      (lambda (syntax-object)
        (printf "foo is ~a\n" foo)
        #'2))
  > (bar)

  foo is 2

  2

  > (define-syntax (bar2 syntax-object)
      (printf "foo is ~a\n" foo)
      #'3)
  > (bar2)

  foo is 2

  3

(define-values-for-syntax (id ...) expr)
Like define-for-syntax, but expr must produce as many values as supplied ids, and all of the ids are bound (at phase level 1).

Examples:

  > (define-values-for-syntax (foo1 foo2) (values 1 2))
  > (define-syntax (bar syntax-object)
      (printf "foo1 is ~a foo2 is ~a\n" foo1 foo2)
      #'2)
  > (bar)

  foo1 is 1 foo2 is 2

  2

2.14.1 require Macros

The bindings documented in this section are provided by the scheme/require-syntax library, not scheme/base or scheme.

(define-require-syntax id expr)
(define-require-syntax (id args ...) body ...+)
The first form is like define-syntax, but for a require sub-form. The proc-expr must produce a procedure that accepts and returns a syntax object representing a require sub-form.

This form expands to define-syntax with a use of make-require-transformer; see require Transformers for more information.

The second form is a shorthand the same as for define-syntax; it expands to a definition of the first form where the expr is a lambda form.

2.14.2 provide Macros

The bindings documented in this section are provided by the scheme/provide-syntax library, not scheme/base or scheme.

(define-provide-syntax id expr)
(define-provide-syntax (id args ...) body ...+)
The first form is like define-syntax, but for a provide sub-form. The proc-expr must produce a procedure that accepts and returns a syntax object representing a provide sub-form.

This form expands to define-syntax with a use of make-provide-transformer; see provide Transformers for more information.

The second form is a shorthand the same as for define-syntax; it expands to a definition of the first form where the expr is a lambda form.