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glBegin, glEnd − delimit the vertices of a primitive or a group of like primitives


void glBegin( GLenum mode )



Specifies the primitive or primitives that will be created from vertices presented between glBegin and the subsequent glEnd. Ten symbolic constants are accepted: GL_POINTS, GL_LINES, GL_LINE_STRIP, GL_LINE_LOOP, GL_TRIANGLES, GL_TRIANGLE_STRIP, GL_TRIANGLE_FAN, GL_QUADS, GL_QUAD_STRIP, and GL_POLYGON.


void glEnd( void )


glBegin and glEnd delimit the vertices that define a primitive or a group of like primitives. glBegin accepts a single argument that specifies in which of ten ways the vertices are interpreted. Taking img as an integer count starting at one, and Image grohtml-21314-3.png as the total number of vertices specified, the interpretations are as follows:


Treats each vertex as a single point. Vertex img defines point Image grohtml-21314-5.png . Image grohtml-21314-6.png points are drawn.


Treats each pair of vertices as an independent line segment. Vertices img and Image grohtml-21314-8.png define line Image grohtml-21314-9.png . Image grohtml-21314-10.png lines are drawn.


Draws a connected group of line segments from the first vertex to the last. Vertices img and Image grohtml-21314-12.png define line Image grohtml-21314-13.png . Image grohtml-21314-14.png lines are drawn.


Draws a connected group of line segments from the first vertex to the last, then back to the first. Vertices img and Image grohtml-21314-16.png define line Image grohtml-21314-17.png . The last line, however, is defined by vertices Image grohtml-21314-18.png and Image grohtml-21314-19.png . Image grohtml-21314-20.png lines are drawn.


Treats each triplet of vertices as an independent triangle. Vertices img , Image grohtml-21314-22.png , and Image grohtml-21314-23.png define triangle Image grohtml-21314-24.png . Image grohtml-21314-25.png triangles are drawn.


Draws a connected group of triangles. One triangle is defined for each vertex presented after the first two vertices. For odd img , vertices Image grohtml-21314-27.png , Image grohtml-21314-28.png , and Image grohtml-21314-29.png define triangle Image grohtml-21314-30.png . For even Image grohtml-21314-31.png , vertices Image grohtml-21314-32.png , Image grohtml-21314-33.png , and Image grohtml-21314-34.png define triangle Image grohtml-21314-35.png . Image grohtml-21314-36.png triangles are drawn.


Draws a connected group of triangles. One triangle is defined for each vertex presented after the first two vertices. Vertices img , Image grohtml-21314-38.png , and Image grohtml-21314-39.png define triangle Image grohtml-21314-40.png . Image grohtml-21314-41.png triangles are drawn.


Treats each group of four vertices as an independent quadrilateral. Vertices img , Image grohtml-21314-43.png , Image grohtml-21314-44.png , and Image grohtml-21314-45.png define quadrilateral Image grohtml-21314-46.png . Image grohtml-21314-47.png quadrilaterals are drawn.


Draws a connected group of quadrilaterals. One quadrilateral is defined for each pair of vertices presented after the first pair. Vertices img , Image grohtml-21314-49.png , Image grohtml-21314-50.png , and Image grohtml-21314-51.png define quadrilateral Image grohtml-21314-52.png . Image grohtml-21314-53.png quadrilaterals are drawn. Note that the order in which vertices are used to construct a quadrilateral from strip data is different from that used with independent data.


Draws a single, convex polygon. Vertices img through Image grohtml-21314-55.png define this polygon.

Only a subset of GL commands can be used between glBegin and glEnd. The commands are glVertex, glColor, glIndex, glNormal, glTexCoord, glEvalCoord, glEvalPoint, glArrayElement, glMaterial, and glEdgeFlag. Also, it is acceptable to use glCallList or glCallLists to execute display lists that include only the preceding commands. If any other GL command is executed between glBegin and glEnd, the error flag is set and the command is ignored.

Regardless of the value chosen for mode, there is no limit to the number of vertices that can be defined between glBegin and glEnd. Lines, triangles, quadrilaterals, and polygons that are incompletely specified are not drawn. Incomplete specification results when either too few vertices are provided to specify even a single primitive or when an incorrect multiple of vertices is specified. The incomplete primitive is ignored; the rest are drawn.

The minimum specification of vertices for each primitive is as follows: 1 for a point, 2 for a line, 3 for a triangle, 4 for a quadrilateral, and 3 for a polygon. Modes that require a certain multiple of vertices are GL_LINES (2), GL_TRIANGLES (3), GL_QUADS (4), and GL_QUAD_STRIP (2).


GL_INVALID_ENUM is generated if mode is set to an unaccepted value.

GL_INVALID_OPERATION is generated if glBegin is executed between a glBegin and the corresponding execution of glEnd.

GL_INVALID_OPERATION is generated if glEnd is executed without being preceded by a glBegin.

GL_INVALID_OPERATION is generated if a command other than glVertex, glColor, glIndex, glNormal, glTexCoord, glEvalCoord, glEvalPoint, glArrayElement, glMaterial, glEdgeFlag, glCallList, or glCallLists is executed between the execution of glBegin and the corresponding execution glEnd.

Execution of glEnableClientState, glDisableClientState, glEdgeFlagPointer, glTexCoordPointer, glColorPointer, glIndexPointer, glNormalPointer,
, glInterleavedArrays, or glPixelStore is not allowed after a call to glBegin and before the corresponding call to glEnd, but an error may or may not be generated.


glArrayElement(3G), glCallList(3G), glCallLists(3G), glColor(3G), glEdgeFlag(3G), glEvalCoord(3G),
, glIndex(3G), glMaterial(3G), glNormal(3G), glTexCoord(3G), glVertex(3G)