I am looking for an easy way to install spell-check dictionaries for languages that are not supported by default on OS X (one example Romanian).

By easy way, I mean a solution that does not require command line usage. While this is ok for me, for average OS X user this could be too complex.

  • In which format your would-be dictionary is? (I'm asking because I installed Finnish dictionary by just double-clicking a .pkg file, which I found from the internet — I presume this wouldn't help you.) Commented Apr 12, 2011 at 9:33

2 Answers 2


Mac OS X is compatible with the aff/dic open format dictionaries.

All you need to do is to get one dictionary, and place it inside ~/Library/Spelling (you may have to create the directory).

  • Get the Romanian dictionary from OpenOffice (or search for another language)
  • Extract the file using The Unarchiver or rename the extension to .zip and extract it
  • Move the files with the .aff and .dic extensions (ro_RO.aff and ro_RO.dic for Romanian) to your ~/Library/Spelling folder.
  • Go to System Preferences > Keyboard > Text > Spelling and choose the language of your choice
  • ...boom! you have system-wide spell checking :)
  • 2
    Why doesn't automatic by language work? Even when manually setting it to Romanian under keyboard preferences for spelling, Safari still doesn't pick it up until you select it in its own spelling preferences!
    – Flyview
    Commented Oct 26, 2017 at 15:10
  • 1
    @Flyview Try to logout and login again.
    – nuc
    Commented Oct 31, 2017 at 11:48
  • Easier to use source: github.com/titoBouzout/Dictionaries
    – fregante
    Commented Nov 23, 2021 at 16:33

Are you talking about in e.g. Word or Pages - or are you talking about in Browsers like Safari, FireFox etc. - or just a system wide configuration ??

One solution for a system wide configuration could be to install the cocoAspell dictionaries: http://kitblog.com/2010/10/get_romanian_spell-check_in_osx.html

  • 1
    I already installed cocoAspell but I encountered some issues. I had to do some ugly symlinks from /usr to /opt in order to make it use the dictionaries installed by macports. Personally I would like a better solution, one that could be used by common users (as opposed to power users).
    – sorin
    Commented Apr 12, 2011 at 11:57

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