### A.7.19 Constant Expressions

Syntactically, a constant expression is an expression restricted to a subset of operators:

- constant-expression:
- conditional-expression

Expressions that evaluate to a constant are required in several contexts: after case, as array bounds and bit-field lengths, as the value of an enumeration constant, in initializers, and in certain preprocessor expressions.

Constant expressions may not contain assignments, increment or decrement operators, function calls, or comma operators; except in an operand of sizeof. If the constant expression is required to be integral, its operands must consist of integer, enumeration, character, and floating constants; casts must specify an integral type, and any floating constants must be cast to integer. This necessarily rules out arrays, indirection, address-of, and structure member operations. (However, any operand is permitted for sizeof.)

More latitude is permitted for the constant expressions of initializers; the operands may be any type of constant, and the unary & operator may be applied to external or static objects, and to external and static arrays subscripted with a constant expression. The unary & operator can also be applied implicitly by appearance of unsubscripted arrays and functions. Initializers must evaluate either to a constant or to the address of a previously declared external or static object plus or minus a constant.

Less latitude is allowed for the integral constant expressions after #if; sizeof expressions, enumeration constants, and casts are not permitted. See Par.A.12.5.