Best Dictionary Software for Linux

Can anyone suggest a good “Dictionary” software in Linux. I have artha, but I am actually expecting a better one.

Ok here are things which i look out for in a dictionary:

  • Good database

  • Word pronounciation (This is not available in Artha.)

Asked By: C.S.



From the link, features include:

  • Use of WebKit for an accurate articles’ representation, complete with all formatting, colors, images and links.
  • Support of multiple dictionary file formats, namely:
    • Babylon .BGL files, complete with images and resources
    • StarDict .ifo/.dict./.idx/.syn dictionaries
    • Dictd .index/.dict(.dz) dictionary files
    • ABBYY Lingvo .dsl source files, together with abbreviations. The files can be optionally compressed with dictzip.
      Dictionary resources can be packed together into a .zip file.
  • ABBYY Lingvo .lsa/.dat audio archives. Those can be indexed separately, or be referred to from .dsl files.
  • Support for Wikipedia, Wiktionary, or any other MediaWiki-based sites to perform lookups in.
  • Ability to use arbitrary websites as dictionaries via templated Url patterns.
  • Ability to run arbitrary external programs for audio playback or content generation (text-to-speech, man pages etc) (use the latest Git
    version for this)
  • Support for looking up and listening to pronunciations from
  • Hunspell-based morphology system, used for word stemming and spelling suggestions.
  • Ability to index arbitrary directories with audio files for pronunciation lookups.
  • Full Unicode case, diacritics, punctuation and whitespace folding. This means the ability to type in words without any accents, correct
    case, punctuation or spaces (e.g. typing ‘Grussen’ would yield
    ‘grüßen’ in German dictionaries).
  • Scan popup functionality. A small window pops up with the translation of a word chosen from another application.
  • Support for global hotkeys. You can spawn the program window at any point, or directly translate a word from the clipboard.
  • Tabbed browsing in a modern Qt 4 interface.
  • Cross-platform: Linux/X11 and Windows + portable to others.
  • Free software: GNU GPLv3+ license.
Answered By: iamsid

My favorite is the “dict” command. It doesn’t pronounce words aloud, but it will give you the written pronunciation. I’d also recommend StarDict, which has a GUI.

Answered By: strangeronyourtrain

As for the database, and in the case you are looking for an English-English dictionary (you haven’t stated that explicitly! 🙁 ), I’m quite content with GCIDE (derived from Webster1913; has pronunciation and middle-quality etymologies) and wordnet.

As for the interface, I use these databases installed in my local dictd through emacs-dictionary client. (Formerly, I used to use Stardict to access these databases.)

Packages with the mentioned stuff in the distro I use:

I love the simplicity of the Xfce4 Dictionary (it is not tied to Xfce and can be easily used in any DE).

It can be used with an on-line dictionary server (by default) or with a localhost server (if you install dictd and accompanying databases like dict-wn for WordNet, dict-jargon, etc.). Independently you may also configure a Web Service like Wiktionary, for example. It has no word pronunciation, though.

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Answered By: landroni
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