# lastIndexOf() String Method in JavaScript Explained

Whenever you use **lastIndexOf()** on a string, the method does the following:

- It searches its calling string for the method's first argument.
- It returns the index position of the last match, or
`-1`

if the method found no match.

- A calling string is a string on which you used
`lastIndexOf()`

. So, in`"Hello, world!".lastIndexOf("world")`

,`"Hello, world!"`

is the calling string. `lastIndexOf()`

is sometimes written as`String.prototype.lastIndexOf()`

because it is a method of the`String`

object's`prototype`

property.

## Syntax of the `lastIndexOf()`

Method

`lastIndexOf()`

accepts two arguments. Here is the syntax:

`callingString.lastIndexOf(valueToFind, startIndex);`

## Argument 1: `valueToFind`

A `valueToFind`

is the first argument accepted by the `lastIndexOf()`

method. It defines the value you wish to find in the calling string.

### Example 1: Find the index of the last `Tuesday`

`"Sunday, Tuesday, Friday, Sunday, Tuesday, Friday".lastIndexOf("Tuesday");`

// The invocation above will return: 33

### Example 2: Find the index of the last `Friday`

`"Sunday, Tuesday, Friday, Sunday, Tuesday, Friday".lastIndexOf("Friday");`

// The invocation above will return: 42

### Example 3: Find the index of the last `7`

`"1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 1, 3, 5, 7, 9".lastIndexOf(7);`

// The invocation above will return: 24

## Argument 2: `startIndex`

The `startIndex`

argument is optional. It specifies the index position where you want the computer to start searching for the `valueToFind`

argument.

Keep in mind that `lastIndexOf()`

, by default, searches backward from a `startIndex`

of `+Infinity`

.

Therefore, if you omit the `startIndex`

argument, the computer will search the entire string backward (right to left).

### Example 1: Find the index of the last `Tuesday`

from the 54th index position

`let daysOfTheWeek =`

"Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Tuesday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday";

daysOfTheWeek.lastIndexOf("Tuesday", 54);

// The invocation above will return: 16

The snippet above returned `16`

because the search started backward from the fifty-fourth index position.

However, suppose you omit the `startIndex`

argument, the computer will search backward from the last item in the calling string (`callingString.length - 1`

).

**Here's an example:**

`let daysOfTheWeek =`

"Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Tuesday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday";

daysOfTheWeek.lastIndexOf("Tuesday");

// The invocation above will return: 89

## Use Flexbox like a pro

### Example 2: Find the index of the last `Tuesday`

from the negative 54th index position

Note that a negative `startIndex`

argument gives the same result as a zero `startIndex`

. In other words, the computer will search for the `valueToFind`

argument at index `0`

only.

`let daysOfTheWeek =`

"Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Tuesday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday";

daysOfTheWeek.lastIndexOf("Tuesday", -54);

// The invocation above will return: -1

The snippet above returned `-1`

because the computer could not find `"Tuesday"`

at the zeroth index.

**Here's another example:**

`let daysOfTheWeek =`

"Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Tuesday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday";

daysOfTheWeek.lastIndexOf("Tuesday", 0);

// The invocation above will return: -1

Suppose `startIndex`

is greater than the calling string's length. In such a case, the computer will default to `callingString.length - 1`

.

**Here's an example:**

`let daysOfTheWeek =`

"Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Tuesday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday";

daysOfTheWeek.lastIndexOf("Tuesday", 3000);

// The invocation above will return: 89

- To find the first occurrence of a substring within a string, use
`indexOf()`

. - You can also use
`lastIndexOf()`

on an array.

## Overview

`lastIndexOf()`

searches its calling string for the last occurrence of the method's argument.