Copy an element of an array to a standard Python scalar and return it.

Parameters :

*args : Arguments (variable number and type)

  • none: in this case, the method only works for arrays with one element (a.size == 1), which element is copied into a standard Python scalar object and returned.
  • int_type: this argument is interpreted as a flat index into the array, specifying which element to copy and return.
  • tuple of int_types: functions as does a single int_type argument, except that the argument is interpreted as an nd-index into the array.
Returns :

z : Standard Python scalar object

A copy of the specified element of the array as a suitable Python scalar


When the data type of a is longdouble or clongdouble, item() returns a scalar array object because there is no available Python scalar that would not lose information. Void arrays return a buffer object for item(), unless fields are defined, in which case a tuple is returned.

item is very similar to a[args], except, instead of an array scalar, a standard Python scalar is returned. This can be useful for speeding up access to elements of the array and doing arithmetic on elements of the array using Python’s optimized math.


>>> x = np.random.randint(9, size=(3, 3))
>>> x
array([[3, 1, 7],
       [2, 8, 3],
       [8, 5, 3]])
>>> x.item(3)
>>> x.item(7)
>>> x.item((0, 1))
>>> x.item((2, 2))