Declan's Chinese Dictionary

How to install a CEDICT dictionary

Declan's Chinese Dictionary requires that the CEDICT dictionary databases be manually installed. Two dictionaries are available for installation. Which one you chose depends on which character set you are learning and where you intend to use the Chinese you have learned.

1. The BIG5 database containing the traditional Chinese character set. The traditional characters continue to be used in Taiwan and Hong Kong and by the Chinese diaspora.
2. The GB database containing the simplified Chinese character set. The simplified characters are used in Mainland China (the Peoples' Republic of China).
The three steps to installing a CEDICT dictionary database:
Step 1. Visit the Declan's Chinese Dictionary home page

and download your selected database file from the links provided under the Chinese Dictionary desciption. There are two links available - one for the Big5 Traditional database and one for the GB Simplified database.

When asked, save the downloaded file somewhere easy to find on your hard drive (or, most conveniently, on your desktop).

Step 2. If you don't have Winzip installed on your machine, you will first need to download and install it. Visit to obtain a copy of Winzip and install the program.

When or if you have Winzip installed, open Window's file explorer and navigate to where you saved the CEDICT in Step 1. Then double click on the file. Winzip should automatically start. You should then see that follow (in the case of the Big5 database).

Now click on the "Extract" button and you will be asked where you'd like to save the extracted file (as shown below). Select somewhere convenient and easy to remember.

Then click the "Extract" button.

Step 3. Now you are ready to install the database for use in Declan's Chinese Dictionary. With the Import Dictionary Manager open as shown below:

Click the "Install Dictionary" button and navigate to where you save the unzipped (extracted) copy of the CEDICT file.

select the database and click the "Open" button.

That is it. You should now see the dictionary as available in the "Dictionary" drop down box as shown below for the Big5 database.

You are now ready to search or lookup characters in your chosen CEDICT dictionary database.