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ClojureQL is superior SQL integration for Clojure
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ClojureQL is an abstraction layer sitting on top of standard low-level JDBC SQL integration. It let's you interact with a database through a series of objects which work as Clojure data type.

ClojureQL is modeled around the primitives defined in Relational Algebra.

For the user this means that all queries compose and are never executed unless dereferenced or called with a function that has the ! suffix.

As a help for debugging, wrap your statements in (binding [debug true]) to see the compiled SQL statement printed to stdout.


Add the following to your project.clj or pom.xml:

Cake/Lein artifact:

[clojureql "1.0.0-beta2-SNAPSHOT"]



Then execute

cake deps

And import the library into your namespace

(:use clojureql.core)




(def db
 {:classname   "com.mysql.jdbc.Driver"
  :subprotocol "mysql"
  :user        "cql"
  :password    "cql"
  :subname     "//localhost:3306/cql"})

Complete specification:

  :factory     (required) a function of one argument, a map of params
  (others)     (optional) passed to the factory function in a map

  :classname   (required) a String, the jdbc driver class name
  :subprotocol (required) a String, the jdbc subprotocol
  :subname     (required) a String, the jdbc subname
  (others)     (optional) passed to the driver as properties.

  :datasource  (required) a javax.sql.DataSource
  :username    (optional) a String
  :password    (optional) a String, required if :username is supplied

  :name        (required) a String or javax.naming.Name
  :environment (optional) a java.util.Map"

  :auto-commit (optional) a Boolean
  :fetch-size  (optional) an integer


(def users (table db :users))  ; Defaults to all colums in table users

>>> ({:id 1 :name "Lau"}
     {:id 2 :name "Christophe"}
     {:id 3 :name "Frank"})

@(select users (where (< :id 3)))) ; Only selects IDs below 3
>>> ({:name "Lau Jensen", :id 1}
     {:name "Christophe", :id 2})

@(-> (select users (where (< :id 3)))
     (project [:title]))  ; <-- Only return the column :title
>>> ({:title "Dev"}
     {:title "Design Guru"})

@(-> (select users (where (!= :id 3))))  <-- Matches where ID is NOT 3
>>> ({:name "Lau Jensen", :id 1}
     {:name "Christophe", :id 2})

@(select users (where (and (= :id 1) (= :title "Dev")))) ;Strings are auto-quoted
>>> ({:name "Lau Jensen", :id 1})

@(select users (where (or (= :id 1) (= :title "Design Guru"))))
>>> ({:name "Lau Jensen", :id 1}
     {:name "Christophe", :id 2})

For lazy traversal of the results, use with-results

(with-results [results users]
   (doseq [r results]
     (println r)))

Note: No alteration of the query will trigger execution. Only dereferencing (@) will!



(-> (table db {:salary :s1})
    (select (where (= 5))))
>>> "SELECT s1.* FROM salary s1 WHERE ( = 5)"


(-> (table db :salary)
    (project [[:id :as :userid]])     ; Nester vector means aliasing
    (select (where (= :userid 5))))
>>> "SELECT AS userid FROM salary  WHERE (userid = 5)"


@(-> (table db :salary)
     (aggregate [:avg/wage]))
>>> ({:avg(wage) 250.0000M})

@(-> (table db :salary)
     (aggregate [[:avg/wage :as :average]]))
>>> ({:average 250.0000M})

(-> (table db :salary)
    (aggregate [:avg/wage:expenses])
    (compile nil))
>>> "SELECT avg(salary.wage, salary.expenses) FROM salary;

 (-> (table {} :users)
     (select (where (= :admin true)))
     (aggregate [:count/*])
     (compile nil))
 >>> "SELECT count(users.*) FROM users WHERE (admin = true)"

 (-> (table {} :users)
     (select (where (= :admin true)))
     (aggregate [:count/*] [:country])
     (compile nil))
 >>> "SELECT,count(users.*) FROM users  WHERE (admin = true) GROUP BY country"


@(conj! users {:name "Jack"})
>>> ({:id 1 :name "Lau"}
     {:id 2 :name "Christophe"}
     {:id 3 :name "Frank"}
     {:id 4 :name "Jack"})

@(disj! users {:name "Jack"})
>>> ({:id 1 :name "Lau"}
     {:id 2 :name "Christophe"}
     {:id 3 :name "Frank"})

@(update-in! users (where (= :id 1)) {:name "Test"})
>>> ({:id 1 :name "Tst"}
     {:id 2 :name "Christophe"}
     {:id 3 :name "Frank"})

Note: All of these take either a single map or a collection of maps as their final argument.

Note: These function execute and return a pointer to the table, so the can be chained with other calls.


(def visitors (-> (table db :visitors)
                  (project [:id :guest])))

@(join users visitors :id)                       ; USING(id)
>>> ({:id 1 :name "Lau" :guest "false"} {:id 3 :name "Frank" :guest "true"})

@(join users visitors (where (=  ; ON =
>>> ({:id 1 :name "Lau" :guest "false"} {:id 3 :name "Frank" :guest "true"})

(-> (outer-join users visitors :right (where (=
    (compile nil))
       (SELECT avg(visitors.field) FROM visitors GROUP BY field)
       AS visitors_aggregation
     ON ( ="

Note: In the final example, visitors contains an aggregate field

Compound ops

Since this is a true Relational Algebra implementation, everything composes!

@(-> (conj! users {:name "Jack"})       ; Add a row
     (disj! (where (= {:name "Lau"})))  ; Remove another
     (sort [:id#desc])                  ; Prepare to sort in descending order
     (project [:id :title])             ; Select only these columns in the query
     (select (where (!= :id 5)))        ; But filter out ID = 5
     (join :salary :id)                 ; Join with table salary USING column id
     (take 10)                          ; Dont extract more than 10 hits
     distinct)                          ; Make the result distinct
>>> ({:id 3 :name "Frank"} {:id 2 :name "Christophe"})

Note: This executes SQL statements 3 times in this order: conj!, disj!, @

Predicate building

ClojureQL provides a macro called where which allows you to write elegant predicates using common mathematical operators as well as and/or. If you prefer to write out the compilable datastructure yourself, import the functions from predicate.clj and use them without the where macro. There is no shadowing of clojure.core operators

(where (= 5 4)) expands to (=* 5 4)
(where (< 5 4)) expands to (<* 5 4)
(where (> 5 4)) expands to (>* 5 4)

And/or are also implemented. Refer to colums as keywords.

(where (or (= :title "Admin") (>= :id 50)))

Strings are auto-quoted

(where (= :title "Dev"))
> "(title = 'Dev')"

Except when containing a parens

(where (>= "avg(x.sales y.sales)" 500))
> "(avg(x.sales y.sales) >= 500)"

The syntax for aggregates is the same as when defining columns: :function/field:fields

(where (or (<= :avg/sales 500) (!= :max/expenses 250)))
> "((avg(sales) <= 500) OR (max(expenses) != 250))"

(where (>= :avg/x.sales:y.sales 500))
> "(avg(x.sales,y.sales) >= 500)"

For more complicated aggregates, use strings. For this there is also 2 helper functions available:

(restrict "(%1 < %2) AND (avg(%1) < %3)" :income :cost :expenses)
> "WHERE (income < cost) AND (avg(income) < expenses)"

(restrict-not "(%1 < %2) AND (avg(%1) < %3)" :income :cost :expenses)
> "WHERE not((income < cost) AND (avg(income) < expenses))"


Eclipse Public License - v 1.0, see LICENSE.


ClojureQL is primarily developed by Lau Jensen of Best In Class.

Large and significant contributions to both the design and codebase have been rendered by Justin Balthrop aka. ninjudd author of the powerful build tool Cake.

In addition, the following people have made important contributions to ClojureQL:

  • Roman Scherer (r0man)
  • Christian Kebekus (ck)
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