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isoquery - Search and display various ISO codes (country, language, ...)


isoquery [options] [file] [ISO codes]


This manual page documents briefly the isoquery command. It can be used to generate a
tabular output of the ISO standard codes provided by the package iso-codes. It parses the
XML files and shows all included ISO codes or just matching entries, if specified on the
command line. Moreover, it's possible to get all available translations for the ISO


This program follows the usual GNU command line syntax, with long options starting with
two dashes ('-'). isoquery supports the following options:

-i standard, --iso=standard
The ISO standard to use. Possible values: 639, 639-3, 639-5, 3166, 3166-2, 4217,
15924 (default: 3166).

-x file, --xmlfile=file
Use another XML file with ISO data (default:

-l locale, --locale=locale
Use this locale for output.

-n, --name
Name for the supplied codes (default).

-o, --official_name
Official name for the supplied codes. This may be the same as --name (only applies
to ISO 3166).

-c, --common_name
Common name for the supplied codes. This may be the same as --name (only applies to
ISO 3166).

-0, --null
Separate entries with a NULL character instead of newline.

-h, --help
Show summary of options.

-v, --version
Show program version and copyright.


If called without any command line options, isoquery will put out a table of all ISO 3166
codes. The first three columns contain the alpha-2 code, the alpha-3 code, and the
numerical code assigned to the country listed in the fourth column.

$ isoquery
AF AFG 004 Afghanistan
ZW ZWE 716 Zimbabwe

If you need only some countries, you can specify any of the codes in the first three
columns to cut down the output.

$ isoquery so nor 484
SO SOM 706 Somalia
NO NOR 578 Norway
MX MEX 484 Mexico

Should you need the translations of the countries' names, just specify in which locale
you'd like to see the output. Please note that the original English name will be shown if
there is no translation available for the specified locale.

$ isoquery --locale=nl fr de es
FR FRA 250 Frankrijk
DE DEU 276 Duitsland
ES ESP 724 Spanje

All of the above works for different ISO standards as well, so you can switch to the more
extensive standard ISO 3166-2 by using the --iso command line option. The columns are
country code, subset type (e.g. State, Province, etc.), ISO 3166-2 code, parent, and name.
The fourth column (parent) may be empty.

$ isoquery --iso=3166-2
AD Parish AD-07 Andorra la Vella
ZW Province ZW-MI Midlands

For ISO 639, the first three columns are the ISO 639 2B code, the ISO 639 2T code and the
ISO 639-1 code. The third column may be empty.

$ isoquery --iso=639
aar aar aa Afar
abk abk ab Abkhazian
ace ace Achinese
zun zun Zuni
zxx zxx No linguistic content; Not applicable
zza zza Zaza; Dimili; Dimli; Kirdki; Kirmanjki; Zazaki

You can trim down the results by specifying only some codes. Moreover, the option to get
translated names is also available.

$ isoquery --iso=639 --locale=pt vi bo kl
vie vie vi Vietnamita
tib bod bo tibetano
kal kal kl Kalaallisut; Greenlandic

If you want to use ISO 639-3, the displayed columns are id, scope, type, part 1 code, part
2 code, and the language name. Both part 1 and part 2 may be empty.

$ isoquery -i 639-3 aal new spa guc
aal I L Afade
new I L new Newari
spa I L es spa Spanish
guc I L Wayuu

ISO 639-5 is also available. The displayed columns are id, parents, and name. The parents
column may be empty.

$ isoquery -i 639-5 aus tut
aus Australian languages
tut Altaic languages

You can get selected translations of currency names from the ISO 4217 standard by using
the following command. The first two columns are the alpha-3 code and the numerical code
assigned to the currency.

$ isoquery --iso=4217 --locale=da cad 392
CAD 124 Canadisk dollar
JPY 392 Yen

If you need to get script names, you can use the ISO 15924 table. The first two columns
are the alpha-4 code and the numerical code assigned to the script.

$ isoquery --iso=15924 jpan latn 280
Jpan 413 Japanese (alias for Han + Hiragana + Katakana)
Latn 215 Latin
Visp 280 Visible Speech

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