< cpp‎ | algorithm
Defined in header <algorithm>
template< class RandomIt >
void partial_sort( RandomIt first, RandomIt middle, RandomIt last );
template< class RandomIt, class Compare >
void partial_sort( RandomIt first, RandomIt middle, RandomIt last, Compare comp );

Rearranges elements such that the range [first, middle) contains the sorted middle - first smallest elements in the range [first, last).

The order of equal elements is not guaranteed to be preserved. The order of the remaining elements in the range [middle, last) is unspecified. The first version uses operator< to compare the elements, the second version uses the given comparison function comp.


[edit] Parameters

first, last - the range of elements to sort
comp - comparison function object (i.e. an object that satisfies the requirements of Compare) which returns ​true if the first argument is less than (i.e. is ordered before) the second.

The signature of the comparison function should be equivalent to the following:

 bool cmp(const Type1 &a, const Type2 &b);

The signature does not need to have const &, but the function object must not modify the objects passed to it.
The types Type1 and Type2 must be such that an object of type RandomIt can be dereferenced and then implicitly converted to both of them. ​

Type requirements
RandomIt must meet the requirements of ValueSwappable and RandomAccessIterator.
The type of dereferenced RandomIt must meet the requirements of MoveAssignable and MoveConstructible.

[edit] Return value


[edit] Complexity

Approximately (last-first)log(middle-first)) applications of cmp

[edit] Example

#include <algorithm>
#include <functional>
#include <array>
#include <iostream>
int main()
    std::array<int, 10> s{5, 7, 4, 2, 8, 6, 1, 9, 0, 3};
    std::partial_sort(s.begin(), s.begin() + 3, s.end());
    for (int a : s) {
        std::cout << a << " ";

Possible output:

0 1 2 7 8 6 5 9 4 3

[edit] See also

partially sorts the given range making sure that it is partitioned by the given element
(function template)
copies and partially sorts a range of elements
(function template)
sorts a range of elements while preserving order between equal elements
(function template)
sorts a range into ascending order
(function template)
parallelized version of std::partial_sort
(function template)