naive go bindings to the CPython C-API

go get



Build Status

Naive go bindings towards the C-API of CPython-2.

this package provides a go package named "python" under which most of the PyXYZ functions and macros of the public C-API of CPython have been exposed.

theoretically, you should be able to just look at:

and know what to type in your go program.

this package also provides an executable "go-python" which just loads "python" and then call python.Py_Main(os.Args). the rational being that under such an executable, go based extensions for C-Python would be easier to implement (as this usually means calling into go from C through some rather convoluted functions hops)


With Go 1 and the go tool, cgo packages can't pass anymore additional CGO_CFLAGS from external programs (except pkg-config) to the "fake" #cgo preprocessor directive.

go-python now uses pkg-config to get the correct location of headers and libraries. Unfortunately, the naming convention for the pkg-config package is not standardised across distributions and OSes, so you may have to edit the cgoflags.go file accordingly.

 $ go get

If go get + pkg-config failed:

 $ cd go-python
 $ edit cgoflags.go
 $ make VERBOSE=1

Note: you'll need the proper header and python development environment. On Debian, you'll need to install the python-all-dev package


Is available on godoc:


package main

import "fmt"
import ""

func init() {
   err := python.Initialize()
   if err != nil {

func main() {
     gostr := "foo" 
     pystr := python.PyString_FromString(gostr)
     str := python.PyString_AsString(pystr)
     fmt.Println("hello [", str, "]")
$ go run ./main.go
hello [ foo ]


  • fix handling of integers (I did a poor job at making sure everything was ok)

  • add CPython unit-tests

  • do not expose C.FILE pointer and replace it with os.File in "go-python" API

  • provide an easy way to extend go-python with go based extensions

  • think about the need (or not) to translate CPython exceptions into go panic/recover mechanism

  • use SWIG to automatically wrap the whole CPython api ?