Skip to content


Subversion checkout URL

You can clone with HTTPS or Subversion.

Download ZIP
A Clojure library mainly aimed at parsing, downloading and reading email from Gmail servers.
branch: master


Clojars Project

A clojure library for parsing, downloading and reading email from Gmail servers.

Possible uses for this library include machine learning corpus generation and command line mail clients.


Add the following dependency to lein

[io.forward/clojure-mail "1.0"]

This is a complete example showing how to read the subject of your latest Gmail inbox message

(ns myproject.core
  (:require [clojure-mail.core :refer :all]))

(def store (gen-store "" "password"))

(def inbox-messages (inbox store))

;; to convert a javamail message into a clojure message we need to call read-message

(def latest (read-message (first inbox-messages)))

;; Let's read the subject of our lastest inbox message
(:subject latest))

(keys latest)
;; => (:subject :from :date-recieved :to :multipart? :content-type :sender :date-sent :body)


We need to require clojure-mail.core before we begin.

(:require [clojure-mail.core :refer :all]
          [clojure-mail.message :as message])

The first thing we need is a mail store which acts as a gateway to our gmail account. To create store we only need a gmail username and password

(def store (gen-store "" "mypassword"))

Now we can fetch email messages from Gmail easily.

(def my-inbox-messages (take 5 (all-messages store :inbox)))

(def first-message (first my-inbox-messages))

(message/subject first-message) ;; => "Hi! Here are your new links from the weekend"

Note that the messages returned are Java mail message objects.

Reading email messages

(def javamail-message (first inbox-messages))

;; To read the entire message as a clojure map
(def message (read-message javamail-message))

;; There are also individual methods available in the message namespace. I.e to read the subject
;; of a javax.mail message

(message/subject javamail-message)

An email message returned as a Clojure map from read-message looks something like this:

{:subject "Re: Presents for Dale's baby",
 :from "Someone <>",
 :date-recieved "Tue Mar 11 12:54:41 GMT 2014",
 :to (""),
 :multipart? true,
 :content-type "multipart/ALTERNATIVE",
 :sender "Someone <>",
 :date-sent "Tue Mar 11 12:54:36 GMT 2014"
 :body [{:content-type "text/plain" :body "..."}
        {:content-type "text/html"  :body "..."}]}

Searching your inbox

You can easily search your inbox for messages

(def s (gen-store "" "password"))
(def results (search-inbox s "projects"))

(->> results first subject) ;; => "Open Source Customisation Projects"


HTML emails are evil. There is a simple HTML -> Plain text parser provided if you need to do any machine learning type processing on email messages.

(require '[clojure-mail.parser :refer :all])

(html->text "<h1>I HATE HTML EMAILS</h1>")


Reading emails from disk

Clojure mail can be used to parse existing email messages from file. Take a look in test/fixtures to see some example messages. To read one of these messages we can do something like this

(def message (read-mail-from-file "test/clojure_mail/fixtures/25"))

(read-message message)

;; =>
;; {:subject "Request to share ContractsBuilder",
;; :from nil, :date-recieved nil,
;; :to "",
;; :multipart? true,
;; :content-type "multipart/alternative; boundary=90e6ba1efefc44ffe804a5e76c56",
;; :sender nil,
;; :date-sent "Fri Jun 17 13:21:19 BST 2011" ..............


Copyright © 2014 Owain Lewis

Distributed under the Eclipse Public License, the same as Clojure.

Something went wrong with that request. Please try again.