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Comment Syntax

Grats uses JSDoc docblock comments to annotate declarations in your code that you want exposed in your GraphQL schema. Using comments to annotate code like this is unusual and can be confusing at first. This document explains how to use docblocks correctly, but Grats itself also aims to be helpful and will warn you if it encounters a docblock that it doesn't understand or is used improperly.


To learn more about why Grats uses docblock comments, see the page Why Use Comments.

In broad strokes, Grats looks for docblocks with special @gql tags and uses the position of those docblocks to infer the declaration to which they apply.


Grats only looks for tags in JSDoc docblocks. JSDoc is a standard syntax for annotating JavaScript code with metadata and is used by many tools, including TypeScript.

JSDoc docblocks are defined as block comments that begin with /**.

Each comment must start with a /** sequence in order to be recognized by the JSDoc parser. Comments beginning with /*, /***, or more than 3 stars will be ignored. This is a feature to allow you to suppress parsing of comment blocks.

JSDoc Documentation

This means the following comments will not be recognized by Grats, but Grats will report an error:

// @gqlType
/* @gqlType */

The reason Grats does not support non JSDoc comments, is that Grats relies on TypeScript to determine which declaration a comment applies to, and TypeScript only recognizes JSDoc comments. See Attachment below for more information.

Tag Syntax

Tags in JSDocs must appear at the beginning of a line and are defined as a @ symbol followed by a name. They can optionally be followed by a value which may span multiple lines.

Any free text that appears in a Grats docblock is treated as that declaration's description.


Because tag values may span multiple lines, description text should be placed at the top of the docblock, before any tags are used.

See Descriptions for more information about descriptions.


Grats leverage's the TypeScript compiler to determine "comment attachment" or, which declaration a comment refers to. Comment attachment is a surprisingly complex problem, with edge cases that don't always feel intuitive. But in general, the TypeScript compiler will attach a comment to the declaration that directly follows it.

If Grats encounters a @gql comment that does not seem to be attached to any declaration, it will report an error. Similarly, if Grats encounters a @gql comment that is attached to a declaration that is incompatible with the tag used, it will report an error.