dict – dictionary browser
is a dictionary browser.
is given on the command line,
prints all matching entries;
otherwise it repeatedly accepts and executes commands.
The options are
Use the given dictionary.
The default is
the second edition of the Oxford English Dictionary.
A list of available dictionaries is printed by option
Execute one command and quit.
The command syntax is described below.
Print a pronunciation key.
Patterns are regular expressions (see
with an implicit leading
Patterns are matched against an index of headwords and variants,
to form a ‘match set’.
By default, both patterns and the index are folded:
upper case characters are mapped into their lower case equivalents,
and Latin accented characters are mapped into their non-accented
In interactive mode, there is always a ‘current match set’
and a ‘current entry’ within the match set.
Commands can change either or both, as well as print the entries
or information about them.
Commands have an address followed by a command letter.
Addresses have the form:
Set the match set to all entries matching the regular expression
sorted in dictionary order.
Set the current entry to the first of the match set.
but use exact matching, i.e., without case and accent folding.
means change the current entry to the
of the current match set.
is an absolute byte offset into the raw dictionary.
After setting the match set and current entry according to
change the match set and current entry to be the next entry
in the dictionary (not necessarily in the match set) after
the current entry.
but go to previous dictionary entry.
The command letters come in pairs: a lower case and the
corresponding upper case letter.
The lower case version prints something about the current
entry only, and advances the current entry to the next
in the match set (wrapping around to the beginning after
The upper case version prints something about all of the
match set and resets the current entry to the beginning of
Print the whole entry.
Print only the headword(s) of the entry.
Print the dictionary byte offset of the entry.
Print the whole entry in raw format (without translating
special characters, etc.).
If no command letter is given for the first command,
the default command is
Otherwise, the default command is the previous command.
Other files in
A font with wide coverage of the Unicode Standard
should be used for best results.
doesn’t begin with
a few literal characters, matching takes a long time.
The dictionaries are not distributed outside Bell Labs.