Split Function in Python – All You Need to Know

Python is one of the commonly used programming languages. We all know many functions that Python performs. So, today we will be discussing the Split function in Python and how to use it. But before moving any further, let us know what split function is!

What is a Split Function?

The Python Split function is defined as the tool for manipulating the string that comprises of characters in a row. The sequence of components and characters is written either in triple, double or single quotes. The ‘a’ character in the framework of Python is considered as a value of length ‘1’. 

Remember that this split function gets utilized when one needs to break larger strings into smaller ones. Strings have Unicode values. These values are mutable. To explain, it means that the string value cannot be changed or altered once its value has been fixed. Look at the example below to understand. 

name = “Python”

print (name[0])

The string cannot be changed after the characters and components are fixed, but one can split it into different kinds of strings using different methods. The split function scans through the strings and separates them from the separator that has already been specified. Have a look at an example of the split function.

string.split (separator, max)

In this, the separator has already been defined. Therefore, it gets its place between the variables which are shown in the output respectively. Their split function in Python depends upon the variable’s value which is separated. 

Benefits of Split Function in Python 

In order to separate the list of the strings in Python, the delimiter string is used like the character comma (,). The benefits are listed below. Have a look! 

  • The function is used to break large strings into smaller ones.
  • If the separator is not predefined, then the white shown spaces are known as separators. 
  • The function in Python helps in analyzing the conclusions easily. 
  • The function is helpful in decoding the strings that are encrypted.  

Working With Split Functions

The variables present in the form of string in Python consist of alphanumeric as well as numeric data. This data is used to keep the directories safe and display different images. . The .split() is a beneficial tool that manipulates strings in order to separate them. This separation takes place through a delimiter tab. This method returns 1-2 new strings along with substrings. Let us understand this through an example. 

x – ‘red,orange,yellow’

x.split (“,”)

[‘red’, ‘orange’, ‘yellow’]

In this example, you can see that the string variable ‘x’ has been declared along with three strings. Here, the split function is implemented with a comma (,) which is a separator, thereby separating the strings from one another. 

Parameters in the Python Split 

The split function is used to analyze the strings and separate them from the separator, which is predefined. This split function depends upon three parameters. Here they are!


The separator instructs the Python when and where the string must be broken. It plays the role of a delimiter in order to separate the string from an already existing separator. The separator is optional, i.e., if the separator is not defined beforehand, then white spaces are used as a default separator. The output of such a separator will come as a string that is empty.


Maxsplit specifies the number in which any one string could be broken. This parameter is also optional, wherein the default value is ‘-1’. This value represents that one can split the string as many times as one wants. There is no limit. If in case, the maxsplit isn’t defined, then the framework scans the complete string and further it is separated by Python. 


The return parameter indeed returns the list of the strings only after their split function holds a specific separator. 

How to Use the Split in Python?

Python works in different ways in which the split can be implemented. Let us have a look at them: 

  • Splitting String using the ‘Space’ 

The split function in Python segregates the strings in the whitespace. Let us look at one instance of this. 

str = “Python is cool”

print (str.split() )

The output is as follows:

[ ‘Python ‘, ‘is’, ‘cool’ ]

In this example, the declared variable ‘str’ has a string value. There aren’t any arguments defined in the split function. That is why the string gets separated in white spaces. 

  • Splitting files into a list 

In order to split the file into a list, it is essential to consider certain things. Firstly, the file should have ‘First Line and Second Line.’ The output for this will be [ “First Line”, “Second Line” ]. This function can be split using the function splitlines(). 

For example, suppose you wish to have a sample text containing two lines. Here’s how you do it. 

f = open (“sample.txt”, “r”)

info = ()

print (info.splitlines() )

f.close ()

The output is as follows:

[ ‘Hi there’, ‘You are learning Python’]

  • Splitting String by Comma 

As mentioned earlier, the split function works through commas (,) as well. The comma acts as a delimiter to split the strings. Have a look at the example below:

str = “Python,was,released,in,1991”

print (str.split(“,”) )

The output for the same is:

[ ‘Python’, ‘was’, ‘released’, ‘in’, ‘1991’ ]

In this example, ‘str’ is declared with commas (,). These commas act as a separator, thereby separating the string. 

So, these are some of the easiest and most commonly used ways of using the split function. The split function in Python is a very useful tool and can split the strings depending upon characters, numbers, and texts. If you wish to expand your knowledge of split functions in Python, then Knowledgehut’s python programming will give you a deep insight into the same. In this way, you will learn new Python skills that will help you in the long run. 


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