Multiple Language Support

Fae support a language nav that makes managing content in multiple languages easy. The language nav will display all available languages. Clicking a specific language will only display fields specific to that language.


To setup the language nav first define all languages Fae will be managing content in.


config.languages = {
  en: 'English',
  zh: 'Chinese',
  ja: 'Japanese'

The convention of this hash is important as the keys with have to match the database column suffixes of the specific language fields. The values will be used as the link text in the language nav.

Database Column Naming

As mentioned above, the column names of fields supporting multiple languages will have to follow this convention:


E.g. the english version of the title attribute would be title_en.

Using Fae’s generators let’s quickly scaffold a model that supports multiple languages (columns without suffixes will be treated normally:

$ rails g fae:scaffold Person name title_en title_zh title_ja intro_en:text intro_zh:text intro_ja:text

To retrieve the correct attribute on the front-end, list translated attributes without their language abbreviation in the fae_translate class method.

class Person < ActiveRecord::Base
  include Fae::Concerns::Models::Base

  fae_translate :name, :title, :intro

# i.e. if English is the locale, == @person.name_en

International records can also be retrieved using find_by_#{attribute}:

class PeopleController < ApplicationController
  def index
    @person = Person.find_by_name(params[:name])

Displaying the Language Nav

Finally, to display the language select menu, you’ll need to add languages: true to your form_header partial:


= simple_form_for([:admin, @item]) do |f|
  = render 'fae/shared/form_header', header: @klass_name, languages: true

  // ...

Internalization of Pages and Content Blocks

Multiple inputs will be generated for blocks that support for multiple languages. Add a :languages key to the field’s definition.

class AboutPage < Fae::StaticPage

  @slug = 'about'

  fae_translate :body, :annual_report

  def self.fae_fields
      body: {
        type: Fae::TextArea,
        languages: [:en, :zh]
      annual_report: {
        type: Fae::File,
        languages: Fae.languages.keys # Set in config/initializers/fae.rb


Utilizing fae_translate in a Fae::StaticPage will automatically use the set locale to determine which content to return.

# set locale
I18n.locale = :zh

# calling an attribute will return the translation content
# => content set in body_zh

Add languages: true to the page’s fae/shared/form_header partial to utilize Fae’s language switcher.

In the Application

To display the right translation, Rails needs to interpret the requested locale. This can be done with a simple ApplicationController method:

# app/controllers/application_controller
class ApplicationController < ActionController::Base
  before_action :set_locale

    def set_locale
      I18n.locale = params[:locale] || request.env['HTTP_ACCEPT_LANGUAGE'].scan(/^[a-z]{2}/).first.presence || I18n.default_locale

The above assumes that your routes support a locale parameter:

# config/routes.rb
scope '(:locale)', locale: /en|zh/ do
  get '/' => 'pages#home', as: 'home' # / or /zh
  get '/about' => 'pages#about', as: 'about' # /about or /zh/about

For URL schemes that require a language locale to always be present, a separate method can be added beneath private in the ApplicationController:

# Forces locale to appear in the URL, even if the request locale matches the default locale
def default_url_options(options={})
  {locale: I18n.locale }

The attribute can then be retrieved normally (i.e. will render @item.name_en if I18n.locale is :en).