Python: remove() and pop()

Rahul S
3 min readOct 6, 2023

“pop” and “remove” have different meanings and behaviors depending on the programming language and data structure being used.


  • “Pop” is usually associated with stacks and queues, which are data structures that follow a specific order for adding and removing elements.
  • In a stack, “pop” typically means removing the top (most recently added) element from the stack. This follows the Last-In-First-Out (LIFO) principle.
  • In a queue, “pop” usually refers to removing the front (oldest) element from the queue. This follows the First-In-First-Out (FIFO) principle.
  • In Python, you can use the pop() method on a list to remove and return the last element by default, but you can also specify an index to pop from a specific position in the list.


  • “Remove” is a more generic term used for deleting an element from a data structure, such as a list or an array, based on a specific value or index.
  • The “remove” operation may involve searching for an element with a given value and then removing the first occurrence of that value.
  • In Python, you can use the remove() method on a list to remove the first occurrence of a specified value. You can also use the del statement to remove an element by index.

Here’s a Python example illustrating the difference between “pop” and “remove” on a list:

my_list = [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

# Using pop to remove the last element (LIFO)
popped_element = my_list.pop()
# Now my_list = [1, 2, 3, 4], and popped_element = 5

# Using remove to remove the first occurrence of a value
# Now my_list = [1, 2, 4]

# Using del to remove an element by index
del my_list[1]
# Now my_list = [1, 4]

In summary, “pop” and “remove” are operations used to eliminate elements from data structures, but “pop” is typically associated with specific data structures like stacks and queues, while “remove” is a more general operation that can be used on lists or arrays to eliminate elements based on value or index.


In Python, both remove() and pop() are methods used to manipulate lists, but they serve…