What would be defined as basic c++? In other words what topics would you expect to see in a beginner c++ book?
Printing to the console, conditionals, loops, functions, etc.
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Most C++ books intended for beginners don't limit the content to the "basics" of C++. Instead, they include pretty much every feature of the language (like templates and DMA) but limit the depth of the subject.

For example, the author may be talking a DMA, but will keep the in-depth details of the subject to a minimum to limit confusion. Then, in more advanced books, details and inner-workings of certain constructs will be explained at a more advanced level.

Though, to be general, what Josue Molina said is pretty much the very basics of C/C++ -- any lower than that and you'll fall into Assembly code.

In my opinion basics is the syntax and semantic of C++ statements. By the way declarations are also statements.
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