This is my attempt to port the Chevie package from GAP3 to Julia. I started this project at the end of 2018 and it is still in flux so some function names or interfaces may still change. Pull requests and issues are welcome.

I have implemented the GAP functionality (infrastructure) needed to make Chevie work. I have already registered most of this infrastructure as separate packages; the following packages are loaded and re-exported so that their functionality is automatically available when you use Chevie. In other words, Chevie is a meta-package for the following packages:

Have a look at the documentation of the above packages to see how to use their features.

I have implemented some other infrastructure which currently resides in Chevie but may eventually become separate packages:

  • factorizing polynomials over finite fields (module FFfac)
  • factorizing polynomials over the rationals (module Fact)
  • Number fields which are subfields of the Cyclotomics (module Nf)

For permutation groups I have often replaced GAP's sophisticated algorithms with naive but easy-to-write methods suitable only for small groups (sufficient for the rest of the package but perhaps not for your needs). Otherwise the infrastructure code is often competitive with GAP, despite using much less code (often 100 lines of Julia replace 1000 lines of C); and I am sure it could be optimised better than I did. Comments on code and design are welcome. For functions that are too inefficient or difficult to implement (such as character tables of arbitrary groups), Chevie uses the GAP package as an extension. This means that if you have the GAP package installed, Chevie will automatically call GAP to implement these functions.

Functions in the Chevie.jl package are often 10 times faster than the equivalent functions in GAP3/Chevie (after the maddeningly long compilation time on the first run –- Julia's TTFP).

The Chevie package currently contains about 95% of the GAP3 Chevie functionality. If you are a user of GAP3/Chevie, the gap function can help you to find the equivalent functionality in Chevie.jl to a Gap3 function: it takes a string and gives you Julia translations of functions in Gap3 that match that string.

julia> gap("words")
CharRepresentationWords  =>  traces_words_mats
CoxeterWords(W[,l])      =>  word.(Ref(W),elements(W[,l]))
GarsideWords             =>  elements

You can then access online help for the functions you have found.

The port to Julia is not complete in the sense that 80% of the code is the data library from Chevie, which was automatically ported by a transpiler so its code is "strange". When the need to maintain the GAP3 and Julia versions simultaneously subsides, I will do a proper translation of the data library, which should give an additional speed boost.


This is a registered package that can be installed/upgraded in the standard way. For Julia newbies, we will remind you what this is. To install, do this at the REPL command line:

  • enter package mode with ]
  • do the command
(@v1.10) pkg> add Chevie
  • exit package mode with backspace and then do
julia> using Chevie

and you are set up. For first help, type "?Chevie".

To update later to the latest version, do

(@v1.10) pkg> update

Chevie.jl requires julia 1.10 or later.


Chevie uses its rich total infrastructure to provide extensions to several of its infrastructure packages.

Extensions to Laurent and Puiseux polynomials


factor(f::Pol{FFE{p}}[, F])

Given f a polynomial over a finite field of characteristic p, factor f, by default over the field of its coefficients, or if specified over the field F. The result is a Primes.Factorization{Pol{FFE{p}}}.

julia> @Pol q
Pol{Int64}: q

julia> f=q^3*(q^4-1)^2*Z(3)^0
Pol{FFE{3}}: q¹¹+q⁷+q³

julia> factor(f)
(q²+1)² * (q+1)² * (q-1)² * q³

julia> factor(f,GF(9))
(q+1)² * (q-1)² * (q+Z₉²)² * (q+Z₉⁶)² * q³


Factor f over the rationals. The result is a Primes.Factorization{typeof(f)}.

julia> factor(Pol(:q)^24-1)
(q-1) * (q²-q+1) * (q⁴-q²+1) * (q⁸-q⁴+1) * (q⁴+1) * (q²+1) * (q+1) * (q²+q+1)


p should be of degree <=2 thus represent a quadratic form. The function returns a list of two linear forms of which p is the product if such forms exist, otherwise it returns [p].

julia> @Mvp x,y

julia> factor(x^2-y^2+x+3y-2)
2-element Vector{Mvp{Int64, Int64}}:

julia> factor(x^2+x+1)
2-element Vector{Mvp{Cyc{Int64}, Int64}}:

julia> factor(x*y-1)
1-element Vector{Mvp{Int64, Int64}}:

Arithmetic and finite fields


valuation(c::Union{Integer,Rational{<:Integer},p::Integer) p-adic valuation of c (largest power of p which divides c; for a Rational, valuation of the numerator minus that of the denominator).

julia> valuation.(24,(2,3,5))
(3, 1, 0)

FFE{p}(z::Cyc) where z is a p-integral cyclotomic number (that is, z times some number prime to p is a cyclotomic integer), returns the reduction of z mod. p, an element of some extension 𝔽_{pʳ} of the prime field 𝔽ₚ.

julia> FFE{3}(E(7))

Extensions to groups



A should be an abelian group or the list of its generators. Such a group has a unique decomposition up to isomorphism as a product of cyclic groups C(n₁)×…×C(nₖ) where C(nᵢ) is a cyclic group of order nᵢ and nᵢ divides nᵢ₊₁. The function returns a list of generators for each of the C(nᵢ).

julia> abelian_gens([Perm(1,2),Perm(3,4,5),Perm(6,7)])
2-element Vector{Perm{Int16}}:

abelian_invariants(G::Group )

G should be an abelian group. Such a group has a unique decomposition up to isomorphism as a product of cyclic groups C(n₁)×…×C(nₖ) where C(nᵢ) is a cyclic group of order nᵢ and nᵢ divides nᵢ₊₁. The function returns the list n₁,…,nₖ.

julia> abelian_invariants(Group(Perm(1,2),Perm(3,4,5),Perm(6,7)))
2-element Vector{Int64}:


Let p be a prime. This function returns the partition of the irreducible characters of G in p-blocks, represented by the list of indices of irreducibles characters in each block.

julia> W=coxsym(5)
𝔖 ₅

julia> blocks(W,2)
2-element Vector{Vector{Int64}}:
 [1, 3, 4, 5, 7]
 [2, 6]

julia> blocks(W,3)
3-element Vector{Vector{Int64}}:
 [1, 5, 6]
 [2, 3, 7]

julia> blocks(W,7)
7-element Vector{Vector{Int64}}:

Extensions to linear algebra

Useful macros


@forward T.f f1,f2,...

is a macro which delegates definitions. The above generates