# instance_eval

# Instance evaluation

The instance_eval (opens new window) method is available on all objects. It evaluates code in the context of the receiver:

object = Object.new

object.instance_eval do
  @variable = :value

object.instance_variable_get :@variable # => :value

instance_eval sets self to object for the duration of the code block:

object.instance_eval { self == object } # => true

The receiver is also passed to the block as its only argument:

object.instance_eval { |argument| argument == object } # => true

The instance_exec (opens new window) method differs in this regard: it passes its arguments to the block instead.

object.instance_exec :@variable do |name|
  instance_variable_get name # => :value

# Implementing with

Many languages feature a with statement that allows programmers to omit the receiver of method calls.

with can be easily emulated in Ruby using instance_eval (opens new window):

def with(object, &block)
  object.instance_eval &block

The with method can be used to seamlessly execute methods on objects:

hash = Hash.new

with hash do
  store :key, :value
  has_key? :key       # => true
  values              # => [:value]

# Syntax

  • object.instance_eval 'code'
  • object.instance_eval 'code', 'filename'
  • object.instance_eval 'code', 'filename', 'line number'
  • object.instance_eval { code }
  • object.instance_eval { |receiver| code }

# Parameters

Parameter Details
string Contains the Ruby source code to be evaluated.
filename File name to use for error reporting.
lineno Line number to use for error reporting.
block The block of code to be evaluated.
obj The receiver is passed to the block as its only argument.