Sunday, August 12, 2012

Groovy Closures Do Not Have Access to Private Methods in a Super Class

Recently I came upon a groovy oddity. (At least it is perceived by me to be an oddity). Closures in a groovy class do not have access to a private method if that method is defined in the superclass. This seems odd paired against the fact that regular methods in a super class can access private method defined in the super class


Groovy closures have the same scope access to class member variables and methods as a regular groovy method. In other words, closures are bound to variables in the scope they are defined. See the codehaus link for the official documentation:

This implies that a closure will play by the rules of Object Orientation in the Java language. However, I found that closures do not have access to private methods that are defined in a super class.

The best way to demonstrate is through a short example from Grails. I have used TDD for the example. Note this is a dummy case with no business purpose. Later on I will offer a more reasonable scenario in the business context where I encountered this scenario.