Two decorators (classmethod() and staticmethod()) have been available in Python since version 2.2. It's been assumed since approximately that time that some syntactic support for them would eventually be added to the language. Given this assumption, one might wonder why it's been so difficult to arrive at a consensus. Discussions have raged off-and-on at times in both comp.lang.python and the python-dev mailing list about how best to implement function decorators. There is no one clear reason why this should be so, but a few problems seem to be most divisive.
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There is some history in Java using @ initially as a marker in Javadoc comments  and later in Java 1.5 for annotations , which are similar to Python decorators. The fact that @ was previously unused as a token in Python also means it's clear there is no possibility of such code being parsed by an earlier version of Python, leading to possibly subtle semantic bugs. It also means that ambiguity of what is a decorator and what isn't is removed. That said, @ is still a fairly arbitrary choice. Some have suggested using | instead.
... the keyword starting the line that heads a block draws a lot of attention to it. This is true for "if", "while", "for", "try", "def" and "class". But the "using" keyword (or any other keyword in its place) doesn't deserve that attention; the emphasis should be on the decorator or decorators inside the suite, since those are the important modifiers to the function definition that follows. ...
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Here we ensure that the key student_id is part of the request. Although this validation works, it really does not belong in the function itself. Plus, perhaps there are other routes that use the exact same validation. So, let’s keep it DRY and abstract out any unnecessary logic with a decorator. The following @validate_json decorator will do the job:
The container must inject a delegate object to the delegate injection point. The delegate object implements the delegate type and delegates method invocations to remaining uninvoked decorators and eventually to the bean. When the container calls a decorator during business method interception, the decorator may invoke any method of the delegate object.
After 2.4a2 was released, in response to community reaction, Guido stated that he'd re-examine a community proposal, if the community could come up with a community consensus, a decent proposal, and an implementation. After an amazing number of posts, collecting a vast number of alternatives in the Python wiki , a community consensus emerged (below). Guido subsequently rejected  this alternate form, but added:
Using functions with "action-at-a-distance" through sys.settraceback may be okay for an obscure feature that can't be had any other way yet doesn't merit changes to the language, but that's not the situation for decorators. The widely held view here is that decorators need to be added as a syntactic feature to avoid the problems with the postfix notation used in 2.2 and 2.3. Decorators are slated to be an important new language feature and their design needs to be forward-looking, not constrained by what can be implemented in 2.3.
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The discussion continued on and off on python-dev from February 2002 through July 2004. Hundreds and hundreds of posts were made, with people proposing many possible syntax variations. Guido took a list of proposals to EuroPython 2004 , where a discussion took place. Subsequent to this, he decided that we'd have the Java-style  @decorator syntax, and this appeared for the first time in 2.4a2. Barry Warsaw named this the 'pie-decorator' syntax, in honor of the Pie-thon Parrot shootout which occurred around the same time as the decorator syntax, and because the @ looks a little like a pie. Guido outlined his case  on Python-dev, including this piece  on some of the (many) rejected forms.
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