is it possible to add a property to an instance?

Diez B. Roggisch deets at
Tue Jul 22 14:51:30 CEST 2008

Darren Dale wrote:

> Does anyone know if it is possible to add a property to an instance at
> runtime? I didn't see anything about it in the standard library's new
> module, google hasn't turned up much either.

Depending on what you *really* want - yes or no.

It is *not* possible to have a property *only* on one instance, because
properties rely on the descriptor-protocol being used, and that only works
for class-attributes. So it's not a matter of "only" adding 

a = Foo()

a.something = property(...)

However, you can of course try & come up with a scheme that only invokes
getters and setters if defined, and otherwise returns a
default-value/raises an attribute-error. Roughly like this:

class Base(object):
   def x_get(self):
       return self.x_get_overload()

   x = property(x_get)

a = Base()

def foo(self):
    return "something"

a.x_get_overload = new.instancemethod(foo)


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