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Difference Between Syntax and Semantics

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  • Last Updated : 15 Nov, 2022
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Syntax:

  • It refers to the rules and regulations for writing any statement in a programming language like C/C++.
  • It does not have to do anything with the meaning of the statement.
  • A statement is syntactically valid if it follows all the rules.
  • It is related to the grammar and structure of the language.

Semantics:

  • It refers to the meaning associated with the statement in a programming language.
  • It is all about the meaning of the statement which interprets the program easily.
  • Errors are handled at runtime.

Program 1: 
Below is the code to demonstrate the semantic error:

C++




// C++ program to demonstrate semantic error
 
#include <iostream>
using namespace std;
 
// Driver Code
int main()
{
    // Return statement before cout
    return 0;
 
    // Print the value
    cout << "GFG!";
}


Java




// Java program to demonstrate semantic error
import java.util.*;
class GFG
{
 
// Driver Code
public static void main(String[] args)
{
   
    // exit() statement before cout
   System.exit(0);
 
    // Print the value
    System.out.print("GFG!");
}
}
 
// This code is contributed by aashish1995


Python3




# Python program to demonstrate semantic error
import sys
 
# Driver Code
if __name__ == '__main__':
 
    # exit() statement before cout
    sys.exit(0);
 
    # Print the value
    print("GFG!");
     
# This code is contributed by gauravrajput1


C#




// C# program to demonstrate semantic error
using System;
 
class GFG
{
 
// Driver Code
public static void Main(String[] args)
{
   
    // exit() statement before cout
    Environment.Exit(0);
 
    // Print the value
    Console.Write("GFG!");
}
}
 
// This code is contributed by gauravrajput1


Javascript




<script>
// javascript program to demonstrate semantic error
 
    // Driver Code
     
    // exit() statement before cout
    function fun()
    {
        return;
 
        // Print the value
        document.write("GFG!");
    }
        fun();
 
// This code is contributed by gauravrajput1
</script>


Output

 

Explanation:

  • The output will be blank because the above program is semantically incorrect syntax.
  • This program has no syntax error as it is following every programming rule but still, it will not print anything on the screen because the return statement is written before the cout statement which causes the program to terminate before printing anything on the screen. This type of situation is considered a semantic error.

Program 2: 
Below is the correct code i.e, without any syntax and semantic errors. 

C++




// C++ program to demonstrate basic operation
// without any syntax and semantic error
 
#include <iostream>
using namespace std;
 
// Driver Code
int main()
{
 
    // To print gfg
    cout << "GFG!";
 
    return 0;
}


Java




// Java program to demonstrate basic operation
// without any syntax and semantic error
class GFG{
 
// Driver Code
public static void main(String[] args)
{
     
    // To print gfg
    System.out.print("GFG!");
}
}
 
// This code is contributed by aashish1995


Python3




# Python3 program to demonstrate basic operation
# without any syntax and semantic error
 
# To print gfg
print("GFG!")
 
# This code is contributed by divyeshrabadiya07.


C#




// C# program to demonstrate basic operation
// without any syntax and semantic error
using System;
 
public class GFG
{
 
  // Driver Code
  public static void Main(String[] args)
  {
 
    // To print gfg
    Console.Write("GFG!");
  }
}
 
// This code contributed by Rajput-Ji


Javascript




<script>
// Javascript program to demonstrate basic operation
// without any syntax and semantic error
 
// To print gfg
document.write("GFG!");
 
// This code is contributed by patel2127
</script>


Output: 

GFG!

 

Tabular Difference between Syntax and Semantic Error:

Basis

Syntax

Semantics

Meaning It refers to the rules of any statement in the programming language. It refers to the meaning associated with any statement in the programming language
Error It is referred to as a syntax error. It is generally encountered at the compile time. It occurs when a statement that is not valid according to the grammar of the programming language. Some examples are missing semicolons in C++, using undeclared variables in Java, etc. It referred to as a semantic error. It is generally encountered at run time. It occurs when a statement is syntactically valid but does not do what the programmer intended. This type of error is tough to catch.
In linguistics The syntax is the arrangement or order of words, determined by both the writer’s style and grammar rules.  There are two areas of semantics that are logical semantics and lexical semantics.
Sensitivity the syntax is sensitive in most programming languages. Most of the semantics are case-insensitive.

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