When I open my private spellfile en.utf-8.add, words containing unusual characters, such as pœësis, are rendered incorrectly; in this case, pÅësis. At the bottom of the screen it says [converted], and :set shows that the fileencoding is latin1. What is happening here and how can I have vim render such words correctly?

1 Answer 1


Try reopening the file and forcing it to load in "utf-8" mode. You can do this with

:e! ++enc=utf-8 %

From :help ++opt

                            *++opt* *[++opt]*
The [++opt] argument can be used to force the value of 'fileformat',
'fileencoding' or 'binary' to a value for one command, and to specify the
behavior for bad characters.  The form is: >
Or: >

Where {optname} is one of:      *++ff* *++enc* *++bin* *++nobin* *++edit*
    ff     or  fileformat   overrides 'fileformat'
    enc    or  encoding     overrides 'fileencoding'
    bin    or  binary       sets 'binary'
    nobin  or  nobinary     resets 'binary'
    bad             specifies behavior for bad characters
    edit            for |:read| only: keep option values as if editing
                a file

I would also recommend adding

set encoding=utf8
set fenc=utf8

to your .vimrc if you have not already done so.

  • Thanks! turns out the conversion happened because I had some Greek words in there.
    – Toothrot
    Jul 5, 2016 at 21:20
  • @Toothrot Glad I could help!
    – DJMcMayhem
    Jul 5, 2016 at 21:29

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