I have a set of real numbers. I need to estimate the quantile of a new number. Is there any clean way to do this in R? in general?

I hope this is not ultra-trivial ;-)

Much appreciated for your response.



2 Answers 2


As whuber pointed out, you can use ecdf, which takes a vector and returns a function for getting the percentile of a value.

> percentile <- ecdf(1:10)
> percentile(8)
[1] 0.8
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ For expediency, ecdf(1:10)(8) also works. $\endgroup$ Jun 8, 2020 at 17:44

To expand on what whuber and cwarden stated, sometimes you want to use a function in a "classical" R way (for example, to use inside a magrittr pipe). Then you could write it yourself using ecdf():

ecdf_fun <- function(x,perc) ecdf(x)(perc)
>[1] 0.8

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