C Language. W3Schools in English. Lessons for beginners

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C Statements


A computer program is a list of "instructions" to be "executed" by a computer.

In a programming language, these programming instructions are called statements.

The following statement "instructs" the compiler to print the text "Hello World" to the screen:


printf("Hello World!");
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It is important that you end the statement with a semicolon ;

If you forget the semicolon (;), an error will occur, and the program will not run:


printf("Hello World!")
error: expected ';' before 'return'
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Many Statements

Most C programs contain many statements.

The statements are executed, one by one, in the same order as they are written:


printf("Hello World!");
printf("Have a good day!");
return 0;
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Example explained

From the example above, we have three statements:

  1. printf("Hello World!");
  2. printf("Have a good day!");
  3. return 0;

The first statement is executed first (print "Hello World!" to the screen).
Then the second statement is executed (print "Have a good day!" to the screen).
And at last, the third statement is executed (end the C program successfully).

You will learn more about statements while reading this tutorial. For now, just remember to always end them with a semicolon to avoid any errors.

Coming up: The next chapter will teach you how to control the output and how to insert new lines to make it more readable.