How to quickly look up a word in macOS dictionary

How to quickly look up a word in macOS dictionary

As a non native English reader, I often feel looking up words manually in dictionary or websites are not fast enough. Fortunately, there are some better ways to do this and I?ll share it for you guys! I have 2 ways.

1. The built-in ?cmd-ctrl-D? shortcut

This handy built-in system wide OS X shortcut is very handy. Just press it and the definitions will pop right on your face. It seems to show all the languages in your normal Dictionary app.

Image for postMac OS X Built-in dictionary popup

2. Set your own shortcut for Dictionary app

This one I personally prefer because it has a larger text compared to the first option (lol). But you?ll need to set it up manually.

  • Open System Preferences app, go to Keyboard section
  • Click Shortcuts tab
  • On the left side, click Services
  • On the right side, click Searching > Look Up in Dictionary
  • Assign your preferred shortcut key (I personally use Command-Shift-X)

Image for postAssigning shortcut key for ?Look Up in Dictionary? service in System Preferences in OS X El CapitanImage for postHit your assigned shortcut, and Dictionary app fires up!

Bonus! You can manually add more dictionary sets to the Dictionary app. You can download a good English-Thai dictionary from here.

That?s it. Hope this will boost up your learning productivity as it did for me. If there?s a faster way, you MUST let me know! Thanks!


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