multi-line stringsΒΆ

Now imagine you are writing an application which manipulates strings. When writing the tests, you may find yourself wanting to put multi-line strings in your steps.

Multi-line strings will do the trick

Feature: Split a string into multiple lines on spaces
  In order to make strings more readable
  As a user
  I want to have words split into their own lines

  Scenario: Split small-ish string
    Given I have the string "one two three four five"
    When I ask to have the string split into lines
    Then I should see the following:
      """
      one
      two
      three
      four
      five
      """

A line with nothing but three quotes (“””) is used to indicate the beginning and the end of a multi-line string.

Now, let’s define a step that knows how to use this.

from lettuce import step

@step('I should see the following:')
def i_should_see_the_following(step):
    assert step.multiline == """one
two
three
four
five"""

Nice and straightforward.

Notice that leading spaces are stripped, and there’s not a newline at the beginning or end. This is due to the way that the parser strips blank lines and leading and trailing whitespace.

If you need blank lines leading or trailing whitespace, you can include lines which start and/or end with double quote, and they will be concatenated with the other multiline lines, with the quotes stripped off and their whitespace preserved.

For example

Feature: Split a string into multiple lines on spaces
  In order to make strings more readable
  As a user
  I want to have words split into their own lines

  Scenario: Split small-ish string
    Given I have the string "one two three four five"
    When I ask to have the string split into lines
    Then I should see the following:
      """
     " one
     " two  "
     "  three   "
     "   four    "
     "    five     "
     "
      """

Which we can verify like so:

from lettuce import step

@step('I should see the following:')
def i_should_see_the_following(step):
    assert step.multiline == '\n'.join([
    ' one',
    '  two  ',
    '   three   ',
    '    four    ',
    '     five     ',
    ''])

Admittedly, this is a hack, but there’s no clean way to preserve whitespace in only one section of a feature definition in the current parser implementation.

Note that the first line doesn’t have any whitespace at the end, and thus doesn’t need to have a quote at the end of it.

Also note that if you want a double quote at the beginning of a line in your string, you’ll have to start your line with two double quotes, since the first one will be stripped off.