I have an elisp file that contains the following:

(defun hello ()
 (message "Hello World"))

(provide 'examples)

When I call unload-feature examples RET, the function hello is still defined, and I can still call it.

However, when I do C-h f hello, Emacs simply states:

hello is an interactive Lisp closure.


Not documented.

In theory, according to the documentation unload-feature should undefine all the defuns.

How can I make it so that when I call unload-feature, Emacs will "forget" hello's definition?

Emacs Version: GNU Emacs 29.3

Note: I am loading the file using dir-locals like this:

((nil . ((eval . (load-file (concat (projectile-project-root) "hello.el"))))))

2 Answers 2


Most likely because you didn't evaluate the file as follows:

(load "/path/to/your-file.el")

(I've tested the above code and it does work.)

If you evaluate the defun form by typing C-x C-e (or similar commands), the evaluated function won't be considered the API provided by that file.

You can use

(feature-symbols 'examples)

to check whether a symbol belongs to the given library.

  • Hello @shynur, I updated my question. Thanks for your coment! Commented Jun 22 at 15:23
  • 3
    @PeterPetigru Each time you open a new buffer under the directory containing .dir-locals.el Emacs will evaluate the expression you specified. So that file will be loaded again and again.
    – shynur
    Commented Jun 22 at 15:31
  • 1
    It's working now. I was unloading the feature outside the directory. Maybe I did something differently. Regardless, thanks for the answer! Commented Jun 22 at 16:23

Like @shynur said; the file was being loaded again and again.

The solution was to simply add an if statement in the .dir-locals file to check if the feature had been loaded already, using featurep.

I did it like so:

 (nil . ((eval . (unless (featurep 'ejercicios-tda)
             (load-file (concat (projectile-project-root) "hello.el"))))))

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