Using class attributes

Leo Breebaart leo at
Mon Feb 15 19:29:38 CET 2010

I have a base class Foo with a number of derived classes FooA,
FooB, FooC, etc. Each of these derived classes needs to read
(upon initialisation) text from an associated template file
FooA.tmpl, FooB.tmpl, FooC.tmpl, etc.

I can derive the template filename string for each instance by
doing something like this in the base class (and then not
forgetting to call super() in the __init__() of each derived

  class Foo(object):

      def __init__(self):
          self.template_filename = "%s.tmpl" % self.__class__.__name__
          self.template_body = read_body_from(self.template_filename)

But, since this information is the same for every instance of
each derived class, I was wondering if there was a way to achieve
the same thing outside of the __init__ function, and just have
these assignments be done as a class attribute (i.e. so that I
can refer to FooA.template_body, etc.)

I can of course always just hardcode the template filenames in
each derived class, but I am just curious if it can be automated
through some form of introspection.
Leo Breebaart  <leo at>

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