Quick Start

Vale is a syntax-aware linter for prose built with speed and extensibility in mind.

Heads up: Our documentation has moved -- you can find the new docs at https://docs.errata.ai/vale/about/.

Example Vale output using a custom style (18F)

Vale is a cross-platform (macOS, Windows, and Linux), command-line linter for prose built with speed and extensibility in mind. Its key features are as follows:

  • Markup support: Vale supports HTML, Markdown, AsciiDoc, reStructuredText, XML, and DITA—allowing it to avoid most syntax-related false positives.

  • Extensibility: Unlike most writing-related software, Vale's primary purpose isn't to provide its own advice; it's designed to enforce an existing style guide through its YAML-based extension system.

  • Performance: Vale typically takes less than 1 second to lint most files, making it fast enough to be included in test suites for large (> 1,000 files) repositories.

No matter if you're working with a small in-house standard or a large editorial style guide, Vale will help you maintain consistent and error-free writing.


If you're using Vale with a markup format other than Markdown or HTML, you'll also need to install a parser.

# See https://formulae.brew.sh/
$ brew install vale
# See https://chocolatey.org/packages/vale
> choco install vale
# See https://docs.brew.sh/Homebrew-on-Linux
$ brew install vale

Or use another package manager.

See the dedicated Installation section for more detailed instructions and options.


Download or clone Vale's example repository and follow the command-line steps below:

$ cd vale-boilerplate
# Check your version of Vale:
$ vale -h
# Run Vale on the sample content:
$ vale README.md
13:20 warning 'extremely' is a weasel word! write-good.Weasel
15:120 warning 'However' is too wordy. write-good.TooWordy
27:6 warning 'is' is repeated! write-good.Illusions
✖ 0 errors, 3 warnings and 0 suggestions in 1 file.