i know that member returns non-nil if the element is found in the list, but it only returns the tail of the list from element onwards. is there a way to return the full list it is a member of?

my case: i'm iterating over a list of plists, and i want to return the particular plist that contains what i search for (i want to access/use the other info the plist contains).

my solution so far looks like this:

 (cl-dolist (child-list parent-list)
   (when (string= (plist-get child-list 'property)
     (cl-return child-list)))

is there a more idiomatic way to go about this? the query is not so much member? or -contains?, as which-list-contains?

  • 1
    Check out seq-find (or seq-filter if you would like to 'filter' out multiple matching lists) Mar 24, 2022 at 17:39
  • @dalanicolai thx for drawing those to my attention. but maybe i'm still missing something: how to construct a predicate that can pass each plist to plist-get as an argument (i.e. child-list in my example).
    – martian
    Mar 24, 2022 at 17:50
  • emacs.stackexchange.com/tags/elisp/info
    – Drew
    Mar 24, 2022 at 18:49
  • is there a way to return the full list it is a member of? The full list is the list you passed to member, no? Not too clear to me what you're asking.
    – Drew
    Mar 24, 2022 at 18:57

1 Answer 1


As @dalanicolai suggested:

  (lambda (plist) 
    (plist-get plist :property)) 
  '((:foo bar) (:baz frob :property quux)))

;; => (:baz frob :property quux)

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