Oracle / PLSQL: GREATEST Function

This article is written about how to use the Oracle/PLSQL GREATEST function with syntax and examples.

Description

The Oracle/PLSQL GREATEST function returns the greatest value in a list of expressions.

Syntax

The syntax for the GREATEST function in Oracle/PLSQL is:

GREATEST( expr1 [, expr2, ... expr_n] )

Parameters or Arguments

expr1

The first expression to be evaluated whether it is the greatest.

expr2, … expr_n

Optional. Additional expressions that are to be evaluated.

Returns

The GREATEST function returns a value that is the same datatype as expr1.

Note

If the datatypes of the expressions are different, all expressions will be converted to whatever datatype expr1 is before comparing.

If the comparison is based on a character comparison, one character is considered greater than another if it has a higher character set value.

Applies To

The GREATEST function can be used in the following versions of Oracle/PLSQL:

Oracle 12c, Oracle 11g, Oracle 10g, Oracle 9i, Oracle 8i

Example

Let’s look at some Oracle GREATEST function examples and explore how to use the GREATEST function in Oracle/PLSQL.

For example:

GREATEST(2, 5, 12, 3)
Result: 12

GREATEST('2', '5', '12', '3')
Result: '5'

GREATEST('apples', 'oranges', 'bananas')
Result: 'oranges'

GREATEST('apples', 'applis', 'applas')
Result: 'applis'