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How do I skip items in a legend?

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How do I skip items in legend? Say I have 6 plots with 3 actual values and 3 interpolated curves. I only want to label the actual value curves so
legend('first','','second','','third')
doesn't really work because the interpolated curve still shows.
  14 Commenti
Greg Vieira
Greg Vieira il 4 Set 2021
How can you do this for multiple plots? For example, I have 1001 data sets plotted and only want the legend to show 1 of the first 1000 plots and the last plot. It is not reasonable for me to place 999 ' ' placeholders.
Kaveh Vejdani
Kaveh Vejdani il 10 Giu 2023
First plot data1, then data1001, the set L.AutoUpdate = 'off'; % L=Legend

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Risposta accettata

Kenneth Eaton
Kenneth Eaton il 29 Ago 2023
Modificato: MathWorks Support Team il 10 Gen 2022
Starting in R2021a, you can leave an item out of a legend by setting the corresponding label to an empty character vector. For example, plot three lines. Then call the legend function and specify the second legend label as an empty character vector. The corresponding line is omitted from the legend.
plot(rand(3)); legend('Line 1','','Line 3')
Note that this strategy works when you specify just the labels, and not when you specify a set of objects to include in the legend.
For previous releases, you can specify the objects that you want to include as the first input argument to the “legend” function.  
For example, plot three lines and return the “Line” objects as array “p”. Include only the first and third lines in the legend by specifying “p(1)” and “p(3)” as the first input argument to “legend”. 
 p = plot(rand(3)); 
 legend([p(1) p(3)],'plot 1','plot 3') 
Alternatively, you can set the “IconDisplayStyle” to “off” for the object that you do not want to include in the legend. For example, exclude the second “Line” object, “p(2)”. 
 p = plot(rand(3)); 
 set(get(get(p(2),'Annotation'),'LegendInformation'),'IconDisplayStyle','off'); 
 legend('plot 1','plot 3') 
  10 Commenti
DGM
DGM il 18 Ott 2022
Modificato: DGM il 18 Ott 2022
I was responding to @Dan Houck who was asking specifically for a means to avoid the implicit item removal that happens in R2021a. Leaving the unlabeled marker was the goal.
As to whether what Dan asked for is visually objectionable, you're free to tell him.
Kaveh Vejdani
Kaveh Vejdani il 10 Giu 2023
L = legend;
L.AutoUpdate = 'off';

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Più risposte (11)

Matt Lobo
Matt Lobo il 1 Nov 2021
Modificato: Matt Lobo il 30 Nov 2021
Essentially set the 'HandleVisibility' attribute to 'off' when plotting something, as such:
plot(x,y,'HandleVisibility','off')
This has some implications concerning interacting with that handle in other ways, but if you don't plan on using the handle, this is a great dynamic way to not include certain plots in your legend. It works especially well when you're plotting iteratively, and don't want to store handles and then hard-code the legend to fit your exact plot.
  4 Commenti
Sebastian Lopez
Sebastian Lopez il 27 Mag 2022
Really helpful. Thanks!
Andres Ricardo Herrera Orozco
Really helpful. Thanks!

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Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson il 25 Gen 2011
Modificato: Rik il 5 Apr 2022
You can set the IconDisplayStyle to off for the items you do not wish a legend for. See this documentation.
Edit by @Rik (2022/04/05):
The link above was valid for the documentation from R2012a. The equivalent page in R2022a suggests a different strategy (i.e. only providing the handles to legend for the objects you wish to include). In the current release IconDisplayStyle is documentated under the properties of the graphics primitives (e.g. line objects or patch objects).
Documentation pages from specific releases will remain online for 5 years.
  6 Commenti
Fernando Zigunov
Fernando Zigunov il 29 Nov 2021
broken link!
Tanya Meyer
Tanya Meyer il 5 Apr 2022
Yes - broken link :(

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Junette Hsin
Junette Hsin il 21 Mar 2019
Modificato: Junette Hsin il 21 Mar 2019
I ran into this problem and I have not seen this method suggested yet, but I solved it by changing the order of my plotted lines which affects what the legend displays (I am using MATLAB R2017b).
Let's say you plot 2 lines first, and then create a legend. Then you plot a 3rd line. That 3rd line will be added to your legend as 'data 1'.
Instead plot 3 lines, and then in your legend, label just the first 2 lines. The 3rd line will be omitted from the legend.
Hope this helps.
  5 Commenti
Brent F
Brent F il 22 Giu 2021
Modificato: Brent F il 10 Ago 2021
@Jim Tonti Yes! Upvote his solution: legend({'A','B'},'AutoUpdate','off')
Gabriela Belicova
Gabriela Belicova il 13 Mag 2022
Both very helpful, thank you so much !!!

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Yasin Zamani
Yasin Zamani il 25 Set 2019
Modificato: Yasin Zamani il 25 Set 2019
For example, suppose you want to skip the name of the first plot in the legend:
x = linspace(0, 2 * pi);
% sin(x)
h = plot(x, sin(x));
% the following line skip the name of the previous plot from the legend
h.Annotation.LegendInformation.IconDisplayStyle = 'off';
% cos(x)
plot(x, cos(x));
% legend
legend('cos');
  4 Commenti
Carl Witthoft
Carl Witthoft il 8 Set 2021
doesn't seem to work for a "fill" object
Soham Sinha
Soham Sinha il 11 Mag 2022
Thanks

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Boris Blagojevic
Boris Blagojevic il 23 Giu 2021
An alternative approach: Prevent the legend from updating
First, plot the lines that you want to have labeled. Then, specify the legend and set
legend(....,'AutoUpdate','off')
then, plot the remaining lines
  3 Commenti
Faezeh Ashouri
Faezeh Ashouri il 10 Apr 2022
Thanks!
Rik
Rik il 13 Giu 2022
Comment posted as flag by Fatima u'wais:
intersted

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the cyclist
the cyclist il 25 Gen 2011
Each curve has a handle, which can be obtained from the properties. Use the form of legend that takes two arguments (handle and legend), and only use the handles of those curves that you want to show.

Dilshad Raihan
Dilshad Raihan il 26 Ott 2015
Modificato: Dilshad Raihan il 26 Ott 2015
You can do this by first plotting the curves in an order so that the lines you don't want to be displayed in the legend comes in the end. That is, suppose you have N lines to be plotted but you dont want to display m of these in the legend. Then first plot the required N-m lines and then the remaining m. After that, turn the legend on, click on the legend and the "legend property editor" will be displayed. Go to the "more properties" option. You can see an entry titled "String" specified as a "1xN cell array". Click on the cell array icon and set the size as "1xN-m". Now, only the first N-m curves will be displayed in Legend.

Diaa
Diaa il 17 Nov 2020
Modificato: Diaa il 17 Nov 2020
You can simply delete the last undesired entry by the following:
% assume you plotted some curves before this line and all of them are desired to be shown in the legend
hleg = legend('show');
plot(x,y) % you don't need this plot in the legend
hleg.String(end) = []; % delete the last legend entry of the very last plot
% continue plotting while copy and paste the previous line immediately after any plot you don't need in the legend
  1 Commento
Amir Semnani
Amir Semnani il 9 Giu 2021
Thanks. That worked for me (MATLAB 2017b) and it's very simple. Let's assume we have 8 datasets and we want to plot all of them, but only want to see the legend for dataset with even number.
x=ones(100,1)*(1:8); plot(x);ylim([0 9]); hleg = legend ('show'); hleg.String(1:2:end)=[];

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Akshay Ravindran
Akshay Ravindran il 26 Nov 2015
Why is it that this error keeps coming up?
<<
>>
  3 Commenti
Ajith Tom George
Ajith Tom George il 17 Nov 2016
If z,x,c etc are the handles, then remove the commas:
i.e. [z w c ...] and you are good to go!
Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson il 17 Nov 2016
No, in each case where z w c etc are expressions that have no spaces in them, [z w c ...] is the same as [z, w, c, ...]
Spaces in expressions sometimes trigger parsing as if there were multiple expressions. For example:
[1 -2*x]
is considered two expressions, 1 and -2*x

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Luke Marsden
Luke Marsden il 2 Feb 2017
I am trying to do a similar thing using this line of code:
leg = legend([p4 RETU_Average activity1 Vulcanian1], 'Tilt', 'RETU Mean Amplitude', 'Activity', '"Vulcanian" Explosions', 'Location', 'northeast');
I am getting this error:
Error using matlab.graphics.chart.primitive.Line/horzcat
Cannot convert double value 23 to a handle
Error in p1_zoom_plot (line 93)
leg = legend([p4 RETU_Average, activity1 Vulcanian1], 'Tilt', 'RETU Mean Amplitude', 'Activity', '"Vulcanian" Explosions', 'Location', 'northeast');
  4 Commenti
Brent F
Brent F il 10 Ago 2021
Have you gotten this method of generating a legend using plot handles to work within a subplot?
Rik
Rik il 11 Ago 2021
@Brent F A subplot is simply a new axes object, so any method should work. You should be careful when using gca or when not supplying a handle at all, as the last axes with user interaction will be the target of your calls.

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Juan Carlos de Luna
Juan Carlos de Luna il 6 Apr 2020
Select line in Plot Browser and type
set(get(get(gco,'Annotation'),'LegendInformation'),'IconDisplayStyle','off')
  2 Commenti
Bart Boonstra
Bart Boonstra il 12 Apr 2021
Thanks that worked for me!
Marya Sadki
Marya Sadki il 29 Nov 2021
Me too thanks

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