One-sided limit

  (Redirected from Right-sided limit)

In calculus, a one-sided limit is either of the two limits of a function f(x) of a real variable x as x approaches a specified point either from the left or from the right.[1][2]

The function f(x) = x2 + sign(x) has a left limit of -1, a right limit of +1, and a function value of 0 at the point x = 0.

The limit as x decreases in value approaching a (x approaches a "from the right"[citation needed] or "from above") can be denoted:

or or or [1][2][3][additional citation(s) needed]

The limit as x increases in value approaching a (x approaches a "from the left"[citation needed] or "from below") can be denoted:

or or or [1][2][3][additional citation(s) needed]

In probability theory[citation needed] it is common to use the short notation:

for the left limit and for the right limit.[3]

The two one-sided limits exist and are equal if the limit of f(x) as x approaches a exists.[3] In some cases in which the limit

does not exist, the two one-sided limits nonetheless exist. Consequently, the limit as x approaches a is sometimes called a "two-sided limit".[citation needed]

In some cases one of the two one-sided limits exists and the other does not, and in some cases neither exists.[citation needed]

The right-sided limit can be rigorously defined as

and the left-sided limit can be rigorously defined as

where I represents some interval that is within the domain of f.[3][4][verification needed]


Plot of the function  

One example of a function with different one-sided limits is the following (cf. picture):



 [citation needed]

Relation to topological definition of limitEdit

The one-sided limit to a point p corresponds to the general definition of limit, with the domain of the function restricted to one side, by either allowing that the function domain is a subset of the topological space, or by considering a one-sided subspace, including p.[1][verification needed] Alternatively, one may consider the domain with a half-open interval topology.[citation needed]

Abel's theoremEdit

A noteworthy theorem treating one-sided limits of certain power series at the boundaries of their intervals of convergence is Abel's theorem.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d "One-sided limit - Encyclopedia of Mathematics". Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  2. ^ a b c Fridy, J. A. (24 January 2020). Introductory Analysis: The Theory of Calculus. Gulf Professional Publishing. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-12-267655-0. Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  3. ^ a b c d e "one-sided limit". 22 March 2013. Archived from the original on 26 January 2021. Retrieved 7 August 2021.
  4. ^ Giv, Hossein Hosseini (28 September 2016). Mathematical Analysis and Its Inherent Nature. American Mathematical Soc. p. 130. ISBN 978-1-4704-2807-5. Retrieved 7 August 2021.

See alsoEdit