one-to-one with cascading delete of orphans causes IllegalArugmentException


Hibernate does not handle cascading deletes of orphans one-to-one properties.

For example in the following relationship:

If you retrieve an Employee with an EmployeeInfo from the DB, then set the to null, the first flush will correctly delete the orphan, but every flush after that in the same session will fail with an Illegal Argument Exception:
java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: object is not an instance of declaring class

I've researched the issue about as far as I can take it. The initial proximate case is that Cascade.cascadeProperty gets the entity name of the parent to pass on to the delete action. On the second call to flush, the value has been deleted, so it uses the entity name to look up the persister in DefaultDeleteEventListener.deleteEntity. It uses that persister to try to get the ID, but that's the persister of the parent class to get the ID of the child class, which fails with the exception above. I tried passing null in as the entityName so it would look up the persister using just the object, but that fails because then the delete has nothing to delete (it actually has been deleted already). That helped me understand the issue better.

In this case, the loadedState of the parent remains in place after the cascaded delete of the child because none of it's direct properties changes. So after the initial flush with the delete of the child, the next flush will still find the child object in the loaded state, but it is no longer in the session's persistence context, and it fails with the IllegalArgumentException above.

I don't know the hibernate internals above, so I don't know if the direct solution I'm thinking of would work: update the loaded state of the parent in Cascade.cascadeProperty after it calls eventSource.delete. Is this too direct? Does it need to happen with the action queue is actually executed? Is there enough information upon execution of this child to update the parent like EntityInsertAction and EntityUpdateAction?

I've attached patch files the 3.6 and master branch with tests that fail because of this issue. I wouldn't mind making changes to fix the problem and submitting a pull request, but I'll need guidance on how to approach it.


Hibenate 3.6.x, 4.1.x (probably all since HHH-4726, but only tested on 3.6 and master branches)




Michael Cameron

Fix versions




Suitable for new contributors


Requires Release Note


Pull Request





Affects versions