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A PHP parser for the CC-CEDICT Chinese-English dictionary


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PHP Version

This parser is written for PHP7. It will not work on PHP5.


Download the current CC-CEDICT file from into the demo folder.

cd demo
composer install
wget -O cedict.gz
php -f index.php


Reads from a CC-CEDICT Chinese dictionary file, and outputs structured data.


Required settings

  • setFilePath() sets path of file to extract and process

Optional settings

  • setBlockSize(int) sets block size to read and parse at a time
  • setStartLine(int) in case you don't want to start from the beginning
  • setNumberOfBlocks(float) in case you don't want to read all the way to the end. You can use INF.
  • setOptions(array) define which data you want returned (see below)

Returned data

The parser will return an array with:

  • an array of Entry objects filled with data as per your configuration (see below)
  • an array of any skipped lines
  • the number of parsed lines
  • the number of skipped lines

Basic Entry object

By default, the parser will fill the Entry object with:

  • an array of English translations from the dictionary entry
  • an array of traditional characters from the dictionary entry
  • an array of simplified characters from the dictionary entry

Customising the Entry object

With setOptions(array) (see above), you can change the data included in the Entry object. If any options are set, the Entry will not include any data that is not specified with setOptions()!

  • Entry::F_ORIGINAL includes the original unparsed line from CC-CEDICT
  • Entry::F_TRADITIONAL includes a string with the dictionary entry in traditional characters
  • Entry::F_SIMPLIFIED same as above but in simplified characters
  • Entry::F_PINYIN includes a string of pinyin as formatted in CC-CEDICT (numeric but with ideosyncrasies)
  • Entry::F_PINYIN_NUMERIC includes a string of pinyin converted to numeric Hanyu Pinyin
  • Entry::F_PINYIN_DIACRITIC includes a string of pinyin converted to Hanyu Pinyin with diacritics
  • Entry::F_ENGLISH includes a string with all the English translations for the dictionary entry
  • Entry::F_ENGLISH_EXPANDED includes an array with the above English translations
  • Entry::F_TRADITIONAL_CHARS includes an array of all traditional characters in the dictionary entry
  • Entry::F_SIMPLIFIED_CHARS same as above but with simplified characters

Limitations, bugs, roadmap

Opportunities for improvement

  • Well perhaps it could output various formats (e.g. JSON) instead of simply arrays?
  • Any further Chinese in the English translation (references, alternative spellings, or full forms of abbreviations) could be structured and nested
  • getFull() still needs to be described (and made accessible, or removed)


A PHP parser for the CC-CEDICT Chinese-English dictionary







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