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guile-xapian provides Guile bindings for Xapian, a search engine library used in popular applications such as the notmuch email system. Xapian is a highly adaptable toolkit which allows developers to easily add advanced indexing and search facilities to their own applications. It has built-in support for several families of weighting models and also supports a rich set of boolean query operators.

Once these bindings are sufficiently mature, they may be merged with xapian-bindings. This will involve creating more complete Scheme-friendly wrapping of the Xapian library, writing test cases and documentation. When we are done, the user should not ever have to call the low level functions in (xapian wrap) and should be able to do almost everything using only the higher level Scheme-friendly functions in (xapian xapian).

There is no proper documentation yet. See the examples in the source tree. Also see Getting Started with Xapian which describes the Python bindings.

*Warning:* guile-xapian is in a very early stage of development and the high level API in (xapian xapian) is not stable. It may change at any time.


Drop into a development environment.

guix shell -Df guix.scm

Bootstrap autotools, then configure and make.


Try out the examples.

First, let's index data in examples/100-objects.sexp creating a Xapian database at /tmp/db.

./pre-inst-env guile examples/index.scm examples/100-objects.sexp /tmp/db

Then, we may run searches on the database. Shown below are a few example searches.

./pre-inst-env guile examples/search.scm /tmp/db watch
./pre-inst-env guile examples/search.scm /tmp/db Dent watch
./pre-inst-env guile examples/search.scm /tmp/db title:sunwatch
./pre-inst-env guile examples/search.scm /tmp/db description:\"leather case\" AND title:sundial



Download release tarballs.

Download public signing key.

Browse the development version of guile-xapian hosted in a git repository.


Feedback, suggestions, feature requests and bug reports are all welcome. Please write to me at


Thanks to these wonderful people! :-)

bug reports, code, tests
Ricardo Wurmus
bug reports, ideas
Ludovic Court├Ęs
bug reports


guile-xapian is free software released under the terms of the GNU General Public License, either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.