# Find most common element in a 2D list in Python

A 2D list has list as its element. In other words it is a list of lists. In this article we are required to find the element which is most common among all the lists inside a list.

## With max and count

We design a follow with a in condition to check for the presence of an element in a given sublist. Then we apply the max function along with the count function to get the the element with maximum frequency.

## Example

Live Demo

def highest_freq(lst):
SimpleList = [el for sublist in lst for el in sublist]
return max( SimpleList, key= SimpleList.count)
# Given list
listA = [[45, 20, 11], [20, 17, 45], [20,13, 9]]
print("Given List:\n",listA)
print("Element with highest frequency:\n",highest_freq(listA))

## Output

Running the above code gives us the following result −

Given List:
[[45, 20, 11], [20, 17, 45], [20, 13, 9]]
Element with highest frequency:
20

## With chain

Here we take a similar approach as the above one. But we use the chain function from the itertools the module.

## Example

Live Demo

from itertools import chain
def highest_freq(lst):
SimpleList = list(chain.from_iterable(lst))
return max( SimpleList, key= SimpleList.count)
# Given list
listA = [[45, 20, 11], [20, 17, 45], [20,13, 9]]
print("Given List:\n",listA)
print("Element with highest frequency:\n",highest_freq(listA))

## Output

Running the above code gives us the following result −

Given List:
[[45, 20, 11], [20, 17, 45], [20, 13, 9]]
Element with highest frequency:
20

## With Counter and chain

In this approach the counter function from collections keeps the count of the element that is retrieved using the chain function from itertools.

## Example

Live Demo

from itertools import chain
from collections import Counter
def highest_freq(lst):
SimpleList = chain.from_iterable(lst)
return Counter(SimpleList).most_common(1)
# Given list
listA = [[45, 20, 11], [20, 17, 45], [20,13, 9]]
print("Given List:\n",listA)
print("Element with highest frequency:\n",highest_freq(listA))

## Output

Running the above code gives us the following result −

Given List:
[[45, 20, 11], [20, 17, 45], [20, 13, 9]]
Element with highest frequency:
20