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GNOME Dictionary
The GNOME Dictionary displaying the definitions for Dictionary
Developer(s) Emmanuele Bassi
Stable release 2.26.0
Preview release 2.27.2
Operating system Unix-like
Type DICT Client
License GPL

GNOME Dictionary, also identified as gnome-dictionary, is a DICT client written in C by Emmanuele Bassi and others. It is part of the open source GNOME desktop software suite, inside the gnome-utils meta-package. This allows users of GNOME to look up words on dictionary sources.

gnome-dictionary was at first an independent DICT protocol client called gdict, created by Bradford Hovinen, Spiros Papadimitriou and Mike Hughes[1]; it was included inside the gnome-utils meta-package during the 1.x release cycle. As a companion to the original application was also added an applet for gnome-panel.

After the 2.0 release of GNOME, due to lack of direct maintainership, the code base of gdict passed the point of being maintainable. In October 2005, the current maintainer of gnome-dictionary Emmanuele Bassi decided to rewrite the application and applet from scratch, removing the old (and mostly deprecated) code[2].

The new gnome-dictionary was added to GNOME during the 2.13 development cycle and became part of the 2.14 GNOME release. It supports multiple dictionary sources, printing the definitions found and saving them to a text file, and has a simpler user interface. The logic of the application and the applet has been moved inside its own shared library called libgdict which can be used by third party applications. As of July 2006 the development version of gnome-dictionary became feature equivalent to the pre-2.14 release[3], with the addition of the list of similar words found (also known as speller).


  1. ^ gdict ChangeLog
  2. ^ Email on the gnome-utils mailing list about the re-design
  3. ^ Announce on Emmanuele Bassi's blog about the speller widget


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