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A library for writing tables

Escritoire is a simple library for printing tabular data in monospaced fonts, typically for use in console applications.


  • prints data using Unicode box-drawing characters
  • supports multiline cells
  • cell contents may be left, right or centrally aligned
  • compact display for tables which don't include multiline contents

Availability Plan

Escritoire has not yet been published. The medium-term plan is to build Escritoire with Fury and to publish it as a source build on Vent. This will enable ordinary users to write and build software which depends on Escritoire.

Subsequently, Escritoire will also be made available as a binary in the Maven Central repository. This will enable users of other build tools to use it.

For the overeager, curious and impatient, see building.

Getting Started

All Escritoire terms and types are defined in the escritoire package:

import escritoire.*

Creating a table to be displayed in a monospaced font (e.g. for rendering in a console) is easy, and first requires a Tabulation instance to be defined, specifying each column and how it should be rendered.

For example,

import anticipation.Text
import gossamer.t

case class Person(name: Text, age: Int, active: Boolean)

val table = Table[Person](
  Column(t"Active"): person =>
    if then t"Yes" else t"No"

describes a table of three columns, Name, Age and Active, defined for rows of type Person, where the content for each column is defined by a lambda, such as and _.age. The return types of these lambdas are any types which can be rendered as AnsiTexts. In other words, any type for which an AnsiShow instance exists.

Given such a definition, any collection of instances of Person, ps, can be rendered as a table (a Seq[Text] of each output line) of maximum width width by calling table.tabulate(width, ps).

For example,

import turbulence.Out
import turbulence.stdioSources.virtualMachine
import escritoire.tableStyles.default
import hieroglyph.textMetrics.uniform

val persons = List(Person(t"Bill", 48, true), Person(t"Janet", 54, false))

def renderTable(): Unit =
  table.tabulate(persons, 100).foreach(Out.println(_))

will return and print a sequence of Texts as,

│ Name  │ Age │ Active │
│ Bill  │ 48  │ Yes    │
│ Janet │ 54  │ No     │


Escritoire is classified as maturescent. For reference, Soundness projects are categorized into one of the following five stability levels:

  • embryonic: for experimental or demonstrative purposes only, without any guarantees of longevity
  • fledgling: of proven utility, seeking contributions, but liable to significant redesigns
  • maturescent: major design decisions broady settled, seeking probatory adoption and refinement
  • dependable: production-ready, subject to controlled ongoing maintenance and enhancement; tagged as version 1.0.0 or later
  • adamantine: proven, reliable and production-ready, with no further breaking changes ever anticipated

Projects at any stability level, even embryonic projects, can still be used, as long as caution is taken to avoid a mismatch between the project's stability level and the required stability and maintainability of your own project.

Escritoire is designed to be small. Its entire source code currently consists of 438 lines of code.


Escritoire will ultimately be built by Fury, when it is published. In the meantime, two possibilities are offered, however they are acknowledged to be fragile, inadequately tested, and unsuitable for anything more than experimentation. They are provided only for the necessity of providing some answer to the question, "how can I try Escritoire?".

  1. Copy the sources into your own project

    Read the fury file in the repository root to understand Escritoire's build structure, dependencies and source location; the file format should be short and quite intuitive. Copy the sources into a source directory in your own project, then repeat (recursively) for each of the dependencies.

    The sources are compiled against the latest nightly release of Scala 3. There should be no problem to compile the project together with all of its dependencies in a single compilation.

  2. Build with Wrath

    Wrath is a bootstrapping script for building Escritoire and other projects in the absence of a fully-featured build tool. It is designed to read the fury file in the project directory, and produce a collection of JAR files which can be added to a classpath, by compiling the project and all of its dependencies, including the Scala compiler itself.

    Download the latest version of wrath, make it executable, and add it to your path, for example by copying it to /usr/local/bin/.

    Clone this repository inside an empty directory, so that the build can safely make clones of repositories it depends on as peers of escritoire. Run wrath -F in the repository root. This will download and compile the latest version of Scala, as well as all of Escritoire's dependencies.

    If the build was successful, the compiled JAR files can be found in the .wrath/dist directory.


Contributors to Escritoire are welcome and encouraged. New contributors may like to look for issues marked beginner.

We suggest that all contributors read the Contributing Guide to make the process of contributing to Escritoire easier.

Please do not contact project maintainers privately with questions unless there is a good reason to keep them private. While it can be tempting to repsond to such questions, private answers cannot be shared with a wider audience, and it can result in duplication of effort.


Escritoire was designed and developed by Jon Pretty, and commercial support and training on all aspects of Scala 3 is available from Propensive OÜ.


Escritoire is a pun: it is named after a type of writing table, since its purpose is for writing tables.



In general, Soundness project names are always chosen with some rationale, however it is usually frivolous. Each name is chosen for more for its uniqueness and intrigue than its concision or catchiness, and there is no bias towards names with positive or "nice" meanings—since many of the libraries perform some quite unpleasant tasks.

Names should be English words, though many are obscure or archaic, and it should be noted how willingly English adopts foreign words. Names are generally of Greek or Latin origin, and have often arrived in English via a romance language.


The logo shows some stylized papers laid out on a green writing table, or escritoire.


Escritoire is copyright © 2024 Jon Pretty & Propensive OÜ, and is made available under the Apache 2.0 License.