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Internationalisation (module for Omeka S)

New versions of this module and support for Omeka S version 3.0 and above are available on GitLab, which seems to respect users and privacy better than the previous repository.

Internationalisation is a module for Omeka S that allows visitors to switch between sites pages, when the sites are managed by language.

This module provides the same features than the Omeka Classic plugins MultiLanguage and Locale Switcher, adapted for the multi-sites capabilities of Omeka S.


It is recommended to install the php extension intl to localize some strings, in particular dates. It may or may not be installed by default on your server, so check the system information in the bottom of the admin board of Omeka.

This module may use the optional module Generic if installed.

The module uses external libraries, so use the release zip to install it, or use and init the source.

See general end user documentation for installing a module.

  • From the zip

Download the last release from the list of releases (the master does not contain the dependency), and uncompress it in the modules directory.

  • From the source and for development

If the module was installed from the source, rename the name of the folder of the module to Internationalisation, go to the root of the module, and run:

composer install --no-dev

Important: Read below to display all translations for interface and metadata.


In Omeka, each site can have one language and only one. The idea of this module is to manage sites by group, each of them (sites) with a specific language. So even if you have multiple sites, you can translate them all and keep them separately by group of sites.

  1. Duplicate a site

It is sometime simpler to start from a clean site instead of to try to fix each page. When you add a site, an option allow to duplicate another site with all pages and settings. Furthermore, each page are related together, even if the site has multiple trnaslations. If the site exists already, you can copy all pages and settings between sites via the site form in the page "Site info".

  1. In site admin board

In the case you didn’t duplicate the site, you have to set the locale setting for all sites you want to translate. It allows to set the language of all pages. Furthermore, set the options you want for the display of the values of internationalised properties of the resources in the section Internationalisation.

  1. In main settings

Set the groups of all sites that will be translated. For example if you have a main site and three exhibits, or four sites for different libraries:

my-site-fra, my-site-way, my-site-vie
my-exhibit-fra, my-exhibit-vie
other-exhibit-fra, other-exhibit-vie

Here, the first site is available in three languages, the second and third ones in two languages and the last is not translated (and can be omitted).

  1. In site pages

Make the relations between translated pages in each group of sites. For that purpose, there is a new field to fill in the site page: the pages that are a translation of the current page. So select the related pages and translate them.

It’s important to set relations for all pages, else the language switcher will display a "page doesn’t exist" error if the user browse to it. Furthemore, it is recommended to use all the same settings, item pools, themes, rights, etc. for all related sites so the visitor can browse smoothly. A new feature will allow to process that automatically, but it is not available yet.

In the case where the page is not yet translated, and you want to avoid an error, you can create a page with the block "Simple Page", and that display the same content than the specified page. It is useful for pages that are common in all the sites too (about, terms and conditions…).

Then, in public front-end, the visitor can switch between sites via a flag.

Integration of the module


The language switcher is not added automatically to the theme. So you need to add the view helper somewhere in the file layout.phtml, generally in the header:

<?= $this->languageSwitcher() ?>
<?php // Or better, to make the theme more generic and resilient in case of an upgrade: ?>
<?php if ($this->getHelperPluginManager()->has('languageSwitcher')) echo $this->languageSwitcher(); ?>

The partial common/helper/language-switcher.phtml view can be themed: simply copy it in your theme and customize it. The helper supports options "template" and "locale_as_code". Other options are passed to the template.


Before the module version 3.3 (Omeka < 3.0), some changes were required in the core or in the them. See older readme for them.

API external requests


To get the list of all the translations of the interface, you can use the module Api Info and go to

For a better output (or for people who don’t have a json viewer integrated to browser), you can add "&pretty_print=1" to the url. For a still better output, you can use the module Next that doesn’t escape unicode characters by default (omeka/omeka-s#1493).

Note that Omeka doesn’t separate admin and public strings.

Translations of api properties, resource class and template labels

To translate the property labels (for example "Title" for dcterms:title), the resource class label ("Book" for bibo:Book) and the resource template label, the client can add &use_locale=xx_YY and &use_template_label=1 to the api queries. In such way, the api will response for example French "Auteur" for the property "dcterms:creator" on a template "Book").


  • Return original page when it is not translated in a site, instead of an error (virtual instant mirror page).
  • Add links for easier browsing between translated pages.
  • Add a button to duplicate a site (item pool, pages and navigation, relations).
  • Add a button to duplicate a page or to append blocks of a page to another one.
  • Add a button to apply settings of another site (except translatable content).
  • Add automatic selection of the site with the browser language.
  • Manage sites by group instead of sync manually.
  • Add a view to display all the languages that are used.
  • Add a bulk edit to normalize all languages, so fallbacks won't be necessary in most of the cases.
  • Add a view to manage fallbacks (site settings?).
  • Sort by the translated value.
  • Sort by the translated resource class and template labels.
  • Duplicate settings and pages for an existing site.
  • Modify the internal urls with the target site one when copying blocks.
  • Copy of pages: there is no mapping for collecting forms.


Use it at your own risk.

It’s always recommended to backup your files and your databases and to check your archives regularly so you can roll back if needed.


See online issues on the module issues page on GitLab.



This module is published under the CeCILL v2.1 license, compatible with GNU/GPL and approved by FSF and OSI.

This software is governed by the CeCILL license under French law and abiding by the rules of distribution of free software. You can use, modify and/ or redistribute the software under the terms of the CeCILL license as circulated by CEA, CNRS and INRIA at the following URL "".

As a counterpart to the access to the source code and rights to copy, modify and redistribute granted by the license, users are provided only with a limited warranty and the software’s author, the holder of the economic rights, and the successive licensors have only limited liability.

In this respect, the user’s attention is drawn to the risks associated with loading, using, modifying and/or developing or reproducing the software by the user in light of its specific status of free software, that may mean that it is complicated to manipulate, and that also therefore means that it is reserved for developers and experienced professionals having in-depth computer knowledge. Users are therefore encouraged to load and test the software’s suitability as regards their requirements in conditions enabling the security of their systems and/or data to be ensured and, more generally, to use and operate it in the same conditions as regards security.

The fact that you are presently reading this means that you have had knowledge of the CeCILL license and that you accept its terms.


The flag icons are released under the MIT license.


This module was built for Watau.

  • Copyright Daniel Berthereau, 2019-2021 (see Daniel-KM on GitLab)
  • Copyright BibLibre, 2017 (see BibLibre on GitLab), for the switcher


Omeka S module that allows to switch sites by language and to make relations between translated pages








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