Creating a custom terminology - Amazon Translate

Creating a custom terminology

You define custom terminology by creating a terminology file. Amazon Translate supports CSV, TSV, or TMX file formats. Each entry in the file contains the source term and the equivalent (translated) term for each target language.

After you create a terminology file, you upload the file to your Amazon Translate account.


The source text in a custom terminology is case-sensitive. During translation, Amazon Translate uses the custom terminology when it finds an exact match in the input document.

Terminology file formats

The following example shows a terminology file in CSV format.

CSV (comma separated values)

en,fr,es Amazon Photos,Amazon Photos,Amazon Photos

The following example shows a terminology file in TMX format. A TMX file uses an XML format that translation software often uses.

TMX (Translation Memory eXchange)

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> <tmx version="1.4"> <header creationtool="XYZTool" creationtoolversion="0" datatype="PlainText" segtype="sentence" adminlang="en-us" srclang="en" o-tmf="test"/> <body> <tu> <tuv xml:lang="en"> <seg>Amazon Photos</seg> </tuv> <tuv xml:lang="fr"> <seg>Amazon Photos</seg> </tuv> <tuv xml:lang="es"> <seg>Amazon Photos</seg> </tuv> </tu> </body> </tmx>


When you upload a custom terminology file, you set the directionality value for the custom terminology. Directionality indicates whether your terminology file specifies one source language or multiple source languages.

For directionality, set one of the following values:


The terminology file contains one source language (the first language in the list). All other languages are target languages.

For example, in a CSV file, the first column contains text for the source language, and all other columns contain text for the target languages.


Any language in the file can be a source language or a target language. For example, if your terminology file contains text in English, French, and Spanish, you can use the file for jobs that translate the following language pairs:

  • English to French

  • English to Spanish

  • French to English

  • French to Spanish

  • Spanish to English

  • Spanish to French

In contrast, you would need to create three uni-directional terminology files for these six translation jobs (one for each source language).