spell, hashmake, spellin, hashcheck - report spelling errors
spell [-bilvx] [ + local_file] [file] ...
The spell command collects words from the named files and
looks them up in a spelling list. Words that neither occur
among nor are derivable (by applying certain inflections,
prefixes, or suffixes) from words in the spelling list are
written to the standard output.
If there are no file arguments, words to check are collected
from the standard input. spell ignores most troff(1),
tbl(1), and eqn(1) constructs. Copies of all output words
are accumulated in the history file (spellhist), and a stop
list filters out misspellings (for example, their=thy-y+ier)
that would otherwise pass.
By default, spell (like deroff(1)) follows chains of
included files (.so and .nx troff(1) requests), unless the
names of such included files begin with /usr/lib.
The standard spelling list is based on many sources, and
while more haphazard than an ordinary dictionary, is also
more effective in respect to proper names and popular techn-
ical words. Coverage of the specialized vocabularies of
biology, medicine and chemistry is light.
Three programs help maintain and check the hash lists used
Reads a list of words from the standard input and
writes the corresponding nine-digit hash code on the
Reads n hash codes from the standard input and writes
a compressed spelling list on the standard output.
Reads a compressed spelling_list and recreates the
nine-digit hash codes for all the words in it. It
writes these codes on the standard output.
The following options are supported:
-b Check British spelling. Besides preferring "centre,"
"colour," "programme," "speciality," "travelled," and
so forth, this option insists upon -ise in words like
-i Cause deroff(1) to ignore .so and .nx commands. If
deroff(1) is not present on the system, then this
option is ignored.
-l Follow the chains of all included files.
-v Print all words not literally in the spelling list, as
well as plausible derivations from the words in the
-x Print every plausible stem, one per line, with =
preceding each word.
Specify a set of words that are correct spellings (in
addition to spell's own spelling list) for each job.
local_file is the name of a user-provided file that
contains a sorted list of words, one per line. Words
found in local_file are removed from spell's output.
Use sort(1) to order local_file in ASCII collating
sequence. If this ordering is not followed, some
entries in local_file may be ignored.
The following operands are supported:
file A path name of a text file to check for spelling
errors. If no files are named, words are collected
from the standard input.
See environ(5) for descriptions of the following environment
variables that affect the execution of spell: LC_CTYPE,
LC_MESSAGES, and NLSPATH.
The following exit values are returned:
0 Successful completion.
>0 An error occurred.
hashed spelling lists, American & British
hashed stop list
See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following attri-
| ATTRIBUTE TYPE | ATTRIBUTE VALUE |
| Availability | SUNWesu |
deroff(1), eqn(1), sort(1), tbl(1), troff(1), attributes(5),
Misspelled words can be monitored by default by setting the
H_SPELL variable in /usr/bin/spell to the name of a file
that has permission mode 666.
spell works only on English words defined in the U.S. ASCII
Because copies of all output are accumulated in the
spellhist file, spellhist may grow quite large and require
The spelling list's coverage is uneven; new installations
may wish to monitor the output for several months to gather
British spelling was done by an American.
Man(1) output converted with