I'm using a plugin (IssueM) which gives the "articles" post-type a custom taxonomy called "Issues".

I need to find and store in a variable the most recently created one of this taxonomy. So, for example, within Issues I have issue-one through to issue-five - I need to return issue-five as it was created most recently.

How can I access this custom taxonomy by date?

  • WordPress doesn't store creation or modification dates for taxonomy terms, so @dougvdotcom's answer below (sorting by the auto-incremented ID#) is going to be your best bet. Mar 16, 2015 at 15:33

1 Answer 1


Use get_terms to select that custom taxonomy, ordering by id DESC and returning only one record:

$latest_term = get_terms( 'issuem_issues', array( 'orderby' => 'id', 'order' => 'DESC', 'number' => 1, 'hide_empty' => false );

This presumes that your WP DB is set up normally, so the highest ID number on the custom taxonomy terms will be the most recently added term.

Also, make sure the slug for the custom taxonomy is Issues, not issues. The slug query is case-sensitive.

  • Thanks for this. Problem is when I do this, I get "invalid taxonomy" returned. I have tried both "Issue" and "Issues" just in case.
    – Francesca
    Mar 16, 2015 at 15:36
  • The correct taxonomy, I believe, will be issuem_issue if my examination of the plugin's code is correct.
    – user12479
    Mar 16, 2015 at 15:38
  • You are correct. Changed to issuem_issue and gets the most recent. Although it will only get the most recent that has posts applied to it. So even though issue-five exists, it returns issue-four as issue-five has no live articles.
    – Francesca
    Mar 16, 2015 at 15:43
  • You can fix this by setting 'hide_empty' to false. Code corrected above.
    – user12479
    Mar 16, 2015 at 15:44

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