I'm looking for the pattern patt[head] that will match any expression expr in which head occurs as a head anywhere within expr. (Ideally, the matching would stop as soon as a matching subexpression is found.)

For example,

Cases[{f, f[0], h[f[e[d[c[a]]]]], p[q[r[f]]], f[2][3][4], x[y[z[0,f[5][6],1,2]]]},

should evaluate to

{f[0], h[f[e[d[c[a]]]]], f[2][3][4], x[y[z[0,f[5][6],1,2]]]}

The answers given to a less general question produce the result

{f[0], f[2][3][4]}

I can't figure out how to adapt those answers to this more general problem.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ How about patt[head]:= x_ /; ! FreeQ[x, _f]? $\endgroup$ – Fabian Jan 16 '15 at 13:40
FirstCase[{f, f[0], h[f[e[d[c[a]]]]], p[q[r[f]]], f[2][3][4], x[y[z[0, f[5][6], 1, 2]]]},
   _?(! FreeQ[#, f[___]] &)]

(* f[0] *)

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