gives the current local date and time in the form {year,month,day,hour,minute,second}.


gives a date list corresponding to an AbsoluteTime specification.


gives a date list corresponding to a DateObject specification.


converts a date list to standard normalized form.


converts a date string to a date list.


gives the date list obtained by extracting elements "ei" from "string".

Details and Options

  • DateList[] uses whatever date and time have been set on your computer system. It performs no corrections for time zones, daylight saving time, etc.
  • DateList[TimeZone->z] gives the date and time inferred for time zone z by assuming that your computer is set for the time zone specified by $TimeZone. »
  • All values returned by DateList[] are integers, except the number of seconds. The number of seconds is never more accurate than $TimeUnit.
  • Shorter lists can be used in DateList[{y,m,}]: {y} is equivalent to {y,1,1,0,0,0}, {y,m} to {y,m,1,0,0,0}, etc.
  • Values of m, d, h, m, s outside their normal ranges are appropriately reduced. Noninteger values of d, h, m, s can also be used. »
  • You can compare two lists returned by DateList using Order. »
  • In the form DateList[{"string",{"e1","e2",}}], the "ei" can be "Year", "YearShort", "Quarter", "Month", "MonthName", "Day", "DayName", "Hour", "Hour12", "AMPM", "Minute", "Second", or "Millisecond".
  • DateList[{"string",{"e1","e2",}}] uses the "ei" to fill in elements of {y,m,d,h,m,s}. Those not filled in are taken to have default values {yc,1,1,0,0,0}, where yc is the current year. »
  • In DateList[{"string",{"e1","e2",}}], the "ei" are extracted from "string" in the order given, and can be separated by any non-alphanumeric characters. »
  • DateList[{"string",{"e1","sep12","e2","sep23",}}] extracts elements using the explicit separators specified. »


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Basic Examples  (6)

Find the current date:

Convert a date object to a date list:

Convert an absolute time to a date list:

Expand an elided date list:

Convert a date string to a date list:

Specify date elements for converting a string:

Scope  (6)

Date lists are converted to standard normalized form:

Strings are automatically interpreted when possible:

Separators are assumed if not specified:

Give explicit separators:

Day, hour, minute, and second values can be nonintegers:

The current year is used if not specified in a string:

Generalizations & Extensions  (1)

Give explicit date elements to interpret ambiguous strings:

Options  (1)

TimeZone  (1)

Find the current date in Greenwich, United Kingdom:

Find the date for an absolute time using a time zone string:

Applications  (1)

Specify interpretation of a string in a standard format:

Properties & Relations  (4)

DateObject represents a date specification:

AbsoluteTime represents dates as seconds since the beginning of 1900:

DateList represents dates as lists of date elements:

DateString represents dates as strings:

Use DateListPlot to plot data with date list coordinates:

Use DatePlus to add time units to a date list:

Use DateDifference to find the number of time units between dates:

Use Order to determine the order of dates:

The canonicalization performed by DateList is significant:

Possible Issues  (2)

Year and month must be integers because the lengths of years and months vary:

There is no

month or day:

Wolfram Research (2007), DateList, Wolfram Language function, (updated 2014).


Wolfram Research (2007), DateList, Wolfram Language function, (updated 2014).


@misc{reference.wolfram_2020_datelist, author="Wolfram Research", title="{DateList}", year="2014", howpublished="\url{}", note=[Accessed: 02-December-2020 ]}


@online{reference.wolfram_2020_datelist, organization={Wolfram Research}, title={DateList}, year={2014}, url={}, note=[Accessed: 02-December-2020 ]}


Wolfram Language. 2007. "DateList." Wolfram Language & System Documentation Center. Wolfram Research. Last Modified 2014.


Wolfram Language. (2007). DateList. Wolfram Language & System Documentation Center. Retrieved from