MySQL seems to support double precision

The FLOAT and DOUBLE types represent approximate numeric data values. MySQL uses four bytes for single-precision values and eight bytes for double-precision values.

Is there a method to declare that a literal is a double precision and not a float, decimal or anything else? I don't see this mentioned in the docs on Numeric Literals. In PostgreSQL, I could coerce a literal to a double precision with

SELECT 1::double precision,
  double precision '1',
  CAST(1 AS double precision);

1 Answer 1


Though not in the docs explicitly on Numeric Literals. You can make a double precision literal with scientific notation (using e0) which seems to work,

MariaDB [test]> CREATE TABLE foo AS SELECT 1.0e0 AS "se_decimal", 1e0 AS "se_nodecimal", 1.0 AS "decimal";
Query OK, 1 row affected (0.03 sec)
Records: 1  Duplicates: 0  Warnings: 0

MariaDB [test]> SHOW CREATE TABLE foo;
| Table | Create Table                                                                                                                                                     |
| foo   | CREATE TABLE `foo` (
  `se_decimal` double NOT NULL,
  `se_nodecimal` double NOT NULL,
  `decimal` decimal(2,1) NOT NULL
1 row in set (0.00 sec)

This is actually supported by the SQL Spec, which shifts the literal from <exact numeric literal> to <approximate numeric literal> when it sees the e or E. From SQL 2011n spec,

<approximate numeric literal> ::=
  <mantissa> E <exponent>

This is what the docs on Numeric Literals presumably refer to when it says,

Approximate-value numeric literals are represented in scientific notation with a mantissa and exponent. Either or both parts may be signed. Examples: 1.2E3, 1.2E-3, -1.2E3, -1.2E-3.

Though the docs don't say the type, it's double (see above).

See also,

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