Does there exist a monadic second order logic formula which is satisfied by a graph if and only if it has an Eulerian path (or Eulerian cycle).

I am looking for properties of graphs which are polynomial time testable but cannot be defined in MSO. I am more inclined to examples of properties from standard textbooks as it is meant for a CS (engineering) crowd and not a CS theory crowd.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Just think for your self: (1) is it possible to express connectivity in MSOL? (2) Is it possible to express the even degree condition in MSOL? $\endgroup$
    – Gamow
    Commented Feb 21, 2018 at 9:15

1 Answer 1


Parity cannot be expressed in MSOL (see for instance http://www.cs.technion.ac.il/~janos/COURSES/236331-15/Lec-1.pdf), but connectedness Yes. Using instead $C_2$MSOL, one can express the existence of an eulerian cycle by using the equivalent characterisation : connected and every vertex has degree even.


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