I am looking for a relatively easy solution for a Japanese spellchecker (not a Japanese dictionary for the Dictionary app) in High Sierra. I would prefer a link to a downloadable spelling dictionary (Japanese websites are okay).

If there are no ready to use Japanese spelling dictionaries, I would be glad if you could point me to a good step-by-step tutorial for making one.

P.S. I already acquainted myself with everything the official Apple website has to offer on the topic. I checked OpenOffice and LibreOffice for Japanese spelling dictionaries and could not find anything that I could make work. I also tried to look for a solution on Japanese and English websites but so far I did not have any luck.

And of course, I did not forget to make sure that my computer is plugged in, turned on, logged into my account, and connected to the internet. It is :).

2 Answers 2


If you have .dic and .aff files, just put them Library/Spelling or Home/Library/Spelling, making the folder if necessary. Apple's instructions are in the setup area of system prefs/keyboard/text/spelling.

I have not seen such files for Japanese, but they may exist somewhere. MS Word has Japanese Proofing Tools usable with that app.

Some info on how to make spellcheck dictionaries is here.

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If you need reference and translation dictionaries, Apple provides those in the Dictionary App:

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  • I saw the very same advice on the Apple website. Unfortunately, I do not have spelling dictionary files. I also did not find already compiled Japanese dictionaries on other websites. Thanks nonetheless.
    – Olga
    Nov 29, 2017 at 4:06
  • Open office uses dic and aff files. Do you not have that? Nov 29, 2017 at 4:09
  • No, I do not. OpenOffice has an extension Japanese Integrated Learning Tool, which is supposed to have the dictionaries I need. However, after unpacking the package I did not find dictionaries in Mac-compatible format. I am not sure how to convert those dictionaries (they are there) for use with Mac OS X system-wide spellchecker. If you have ideas how to do it I would much appreciate them.
    – Olga
    Nov 29, 2017 at 6:42
  • JILT is not a spellchecker, it is a reference and translation dictionary. If you cannot find .dic and .aff files via Google, you are out of luck for MacOS. The only Japanese spellchecker I know of is the Proofing Tool provided for MS Word. I added a link to the answer with info on how to make dictionaries. Nov 29, 2017 at 13:21
  • Thank you for your effort. I do have Japanese dictionaries enabled in the Dictionary app. However, I am looking specifically for a solution for a system-wide spellchecker for the Japanese language. (I do not use MS Office, so it is not an option.) I am asking here because an extensive internet search in English and Japanese have not yielded any results so far.
    – Olga
    Nov 29, 2017 at 15:59

Before there was a Dictionary.app on Mac OS X I used the WordNet.app from mulle-kybernetik.
It uses the dictionaries from wordnet.
There's a Japanese version of wordnet (and an English translation).

I don't know if these dictionaries can be used in the Dictionary.app but I remember that the WordNet.app was wonderful. It was last updated for Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther) in 2003. It will not work on the current macOS 10.13. Source code is available for the adventurous.

For systemwide spelling, there's a "Check spelling while typing" in the Edit > Spelling and grammar menu. As far as I know this uses the Dictionary.app files.

  • 1
    Dictionary app has nothing to do with spellcheck. It is only definitions, either same language or English translation. Nov 29, 2017 at 16:55

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