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MS Excel: ROW Function (WS)

Learn how to use the Excel ROW function with syntax and examples.


The Microsoft Excel ROW function returns the row number of a cell reference.


The syntax for the Microsoft Excel ROW function is:

ROW( [reference] )

Parameters or Arguments

reference is optional. It is a reference to a cell or range of cells.


If the reference parameter is omitted, then the ROW function assumes that the reference is the cell address in which the ROW function has been entered in.

Microsoft Excel

For example, the ROW function used in the picture above returns 1 because the ROW function has been entered in cell A1. Therefore, it assumes the following formula:


Applies To

The ROW function can be used in the following versions of Microsoft Excel:

  • Excel 2013, Excel 2011 for Mac, Excel 2010, Excel 2007, Excel 2003, Excel XP, Excel 2000

Type of Excel Function

The ROW function can be used in Microsoft Excel as the following type of function:

  • Worksheet function (WS)

Example (as Worksheet Function)

Let's look at some Excel ROW function examples and explore how to use the ROW function as a worksheet function in Microsoft Excel:

Microsoft Excel

Based on the spreadsheet above, the following Excel ROW examples would return:

=ROW(B4) would return 4
=ROW(A5:C5) would return 5
=ROW(B1:G9) would return 1