How to Count Letters in a String – Python


When you’re working with strings in Python, there may be times when you need to count the number of characters in a string. In this quick tutorial, we’ll show you how to do just that. We’ll also talk about some of the different ways you can format your string to get the results you want. So, let’s get started!

Counting Characters in a String – len()

The easiest way to count the number of characters in a string is to use the built-in len() function. All you need to do is pass the string into the len() function, and it will return the number of characters in the string for you.

Here’s a quick example:

my_string = "Hello, world!" print(len(my_string)) # prints 13
Code language: PHP (php)

As you can see from the example above, all we did was pass our string into the len() function, and it returned the number of characters in our string. Pretty simple, right?

But what if we only want to count certain types of characters? For instance, what if we want to know how many letters are in our string? In order to do that, we’ll need to get a little bit more creative with our approach.

Counting Letters in a String – count()

The count() method allows us to specify the character or substring we want to search for, and it will return the number of times that character or substring appears in our string. Let’s take a look at a quick example:

#python my_string = "Hello, world!" print(my_string.count("l")) # prints 3 print(my_string.count("H")) # prints 1
Code language: PHP (php)

As you can see from the examples above, calling count() on our string with either “l” or “H” as an argument returns 3 and 1 respectively – which happens to be the number of times those characters appear in our original string.

If we want to count substrings instead of individual characters (e.g. counting how many words are in our string), then we can simply pass that substring into count().

For example:

python print(my_string.count("Hello")) # prints 1 print(my_string.count("world")) # prints 1 print(my_string.count("o")) # prints 2
Code language: PHP (php)

As expected, passing “Hello” and “world” into count()returns 1 since each word only appears once in our original string.”o”, on the other hand, appears twice – so count()returns 2 when called with “o” as an argument.

Conclusion:

That’s all there is too it! As you can see, counting characters (or substrings) ina string is easy using Python’s built-in functions like len(), and methods like count(). Witha little bit of creativity and ingenuity, there’s no limitto what you can do with this technique! Thanks for reading!

Andy Avery

I really enjoy helping people with their tech problems to make life easier, ​and that’s what I’ve been doing professionally for the past decade.

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