Change in javac handling of anonymous/local classes

Alex Buckley alex.buckley at
Wed Feb 27 16:01:18 PST 2013

On 2/27/2013 3:45 PM, John Rose wrote:
> The original draft of the inner classes spec. anticipated the comb rule
> and *excluded* it, as prone to error.  (We decided that mixing
> inheritance and lexical scoping was a bad idea, at least for simple
> identifiers.)
> The then-editor of the JLS disagreed with that exclusion and refrained
> from incorporating it into the official spec.

So to unravel the double negatives: JLS Second Edition in 1999 
incorporated the comb rule despite javac not implementing it until JDK 
1.4 in 2002? (Your blog entry says javac prior to 1.4 implemented 
Mother-May-I.) Astonishing.

I plan to add a note to JLS8 identifying the comb rule in 15.12.1, and 
also an example based on John Spicer's code.


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