Keyword Return

The Return keyword causes program flow to exit a function or method and return a value to the calling statement.


Return value


The Return keyword is used to exit a function or method while providing a return value.

In Strict mode, all functions and methods must explicitly return a value.

In non-Strict mode, Return may be used with or without a value to simply exit a function or method at any point. When the return value is omitted in this way, a default zero or Null value, or an empty string, will be returned, depending on the function or method's return type.

Note that Return can be omitted completely in non-Strict mode; a default zero or Null value, or an empty string, will be returned to the caller at the natural end of the function or method.

See also

Function | Method
Language reference


This runnable example returns a string dependent on the animal passed to the MakeSound function; try changing "dog" to "cat" or "cow":

Function Main () 
    Local animal:String = "dog" 
    Print "The " + animal + " says " + MakeSound (animal
Function MakeSound:String (animal_type:String
    Select animal_type 
        Case "dog" 
            Return "Woof!" 
        Case "cat" 
            Return "Meeow!" 
        Case "cow" 
            Return "Moo!" 

In non-Strict mode, you can call Return without a value, in which case a default value will be returned. (See description.)

In this example, if level is zero we simply exit the function early with a Return call.

However, note that if level is non-zero, the example doesn't call Return at all; in this case, a default value would be returned at the end of the function.

Function PassedTest (level
    If level = 0 Then Return 
    If level = 1 Then Print "Top dog!" 
    If level = 2 Then Print "Not bad!" 
    If level = 3 Then Print "Loser!" 

(You could of course add a Return at the end of this function if you wanted to. Return 1, for example, would allow the function to return 0 for a test failure and 1 for a pass.)

Here's the same example updated for Strict mode. Note that we must return a value here; in this case, the Return at the end is not optional (though the value could be anything).

Function PassedTest:Int (level:Int
    If level = 0 Then Return 0 
    If level = 1 Then Print "Top dog!" 
    If level = 2 Then Print "Not bad!" 
    If level = 3 Then Print "Loser!" 
    Return 1 

In Strict mode, a minimal Monkey program would look like this, with the Main function explicitly returning an integer value:

Function Main:Int () 
    Return 1