The Pali Text Reader software is a reader for Pali texts. It provides in depth search (both throughout the tipitaka or single files), a dictionary and an (machine based) automatic Pali - English translator. The Pali Text Reader comes along with a library, containg all Tipitaka books compressed in a zip archive. Thus, you can read, search and study the Buddhist Canon wherever you are - it just needs approximately 40MB...

Some key features...

incremental search; clearly laid out open books menu loading zipped Tipitaka library with all VRI volumes; memory function: starts program with last open book; customize view; rudimentary translator function; dictionary; in depth search throughout the canon; look up words via context menu; word compound analyzer; highlight text passages; bookmark texts; switch between atthakatha, mula and tika; save file in RTF or UNICODE format; best of all: its free!


For current screenshots have a look at our screenshot section


Pali is an ancient middle Indian language, closely related to the mother tongue of the Buddha. For over 2500 years Buddhist tradition handed down a vast amount of scriptures all written in Pali, which contain the accumulated wisdom of the Buddhist teaching.

During the 90's, in a joint effort, the Pali Canon literature (containing several thousand pages) was digitized and published by the VRI, a none profit organisation. Their CDROM, the "Chattha Sangayana CDROM" or CSCD has been since one of my foremost tools when studying the source of Buddhist teaching. However, the software which handled reading and studying the volumes quite well, missed some features which i definetly was looking for (i.e. adding entries to the dictionary). Besides this, installing the Pitaka was a several hundred MB task - to much for my USB stick or a pocket PC.

So i started coding a Pali Text Reader (PTR) - for one i wanted to add some features into the pali text reading tool, which i was looking for for a long time on the other hand i just got to know the benefits of Microsofts .NET Framework and C# and thought that it might be a good way of practising.