Decorator Classes

Decorator Classes are a structure to write more sophisticated decorators that have an internal state. They allow you to pass arguments into the decorator as well.

Key points:

  • the constructor __init__() receives the arguments given in the line starting with @
  • the __call__() method should return the decorator function
  • the safe_call() method gets called in the end (you can give it a different name)

Here is a code example that counts how many errors have been produced.

class FailureCounter:

    def __init__(self, message):
        self.message = message
        self.function = None
        self.failcount = 0

    def __call__(self, func):
        self.function = func
        return self.safe_call

    def safe_call(self, *args):
        except IOError:
            self.failcount += 1
            print(f'An I/O error was caught in {self.function.__name__}')
            print(f"with the file name '{args[0]}'")
            print(f'this is failure #{self.failcount}\n')

@FailureCounter('--- FILE ERROR ---')
def risky_fileopen(filename):


Dr. Kristian Rother

I am a professional Python trainer, developer and author based in Berlin. I believe everybody can learn programming.

Contact me via:
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I have started writing a post-doc grant proposal for the DAAD post-doc programme using the skills I learned from the grant proposal workshop and I find the workshop to be very helpful.

Mecha Ezekiel, GGL Giessen

See also