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Curtsies is a Python 2.6+ & 3.3+ compatible library for interacting with the terminal. This is what using (nearly every feature of) curtsies looks like:

from __future__ import unicode_literals # convenient for Python 2
import random

from curtsies import FullscreenWindow, Input, FSArray
from curtsies.fmtfuncs import red, bold, green, on_blue, yellow

print(yellow('this prints normally, not to the alternate screen'))
with FullscreenWindow() as window:
    with Input() as input_generator:
        msg = red(on_blue(bold('Press escape to exit')))
        a = FSArray(window.height, window.width)
        a[0:1, 0:msg.width] = [msg]
        for c in input_generator:
            if c == '<ESC>':
            elif c == '<SPACE>':
                a = FSArray(window.height, window.width)
                s = repr(c).decode()
                row = random.choice(range(window.height))
                column = random.choice(range(window.width-len(s)))
                color = random.choice([red, green, on_blue, yellow])
                a[row, column:column+len(s)] = [color(s)]

Paste it in a file and try it out!

Installation: pip install curtsies



FmtStr objects are strings formatted with colors and styles displayable in a terminal with ANSI escape sequences.

(the import statement shown below is outdated)

FSArray objects contain multiple such strings with each formatted string on its own row, and FSArray objects can be superimposed on each other to build complex grids of colored and styled characters through composition.

(the import statement shown below is outdated)

Such grids of characters can be rendered to the terminal in alternate screen mode (no history, like Vim, top etc.) by FullscreenWindow objects or normal history-preserving screen by CursorAwareWindow objects. User keyboard input events like pressing the up arrow key are detected by an Input object.



  • Curtsies Documentation
  • Curtsies was written to for bpython-curtsies
  • #bpython on irc is a good place to talk about Curtsies, but feel free to open an issue if you're having a problem!
  • Thanks to the many contributors!
  • If all you need are colored strings, consider one of these other libraries!


Curses-like terminal wrapper with a display based on compositing 2d arrays of text.




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