I was working on an NLP project and using TextBlob to create ngrams. The thing is, TextBlob's tokenizer splits contractions. Let's becomes Let and 's. That sucks. One solution is to expand common contractions before tokenizing the string. That's what this code does.

Granted, it would make even more sense to write/use a tokenzier that didn't split on apostrophes. That's ultimately what I ended up doing too, but this snippet is still useful.

FYI

I did not write this code. I shamelessly copied it from this Stack Overflow thread. All credit belongs to alko and arturomp. All I did was clean up the dict by removing all the we shall and alternate entries.

basically, it's a big find/replace.

import re
cList = {
  "ain't": "am not",
  "aren't": "are not",
  "can't": "cannot",
  "can't've": "cannot have",
  "'cause": "because",
  "could've": "could have",
  "couldn't": "could not",
  "couldn't've": "could not have",
  "didn't": "did not",
  "doesn't": "does not",
  "don't": "do not",
  "hadn't": "had not",
  "hadn't've": "had not have",
  "hasn't": "has not",
  "haven't": "have not",
  "he'd": "he would",
  "he'd've": "he would have",
  "he'll": "he will",
  "he'll've": "he will have",
  "he's": "he is",
  "how'd": "how did",
  "how'd'y": "how do you",
  "how'll": "how will",
  "how's": "how is",
  "I'd": "I would",
  "I'd've": "I would have",
  "I'll": "I will",
  "I'll've": "I will have",
  "I'm": "I am",
  "I've": "I have",
  "isn't": "is not",
  "it'd": "it had",
  "it'd've": "it would have",
  "it'll": "it will",
  "it'll've": "it will have",
  "it's": "it is",
  "let's": "let us",
  "ma'am": "madam",
  "mayn't": "may not",
  "might've": "might have",
  "mightn't": "might not",
  "mightn't've": "might not have",
  "must've": "must have",
  "mustn't": "must not",
  "mustn't've": "must not have",
  "needn't": "need not",
  "needn't've": "need not have",
  "o'clock": "of the clock",
  "oughtn't": "ought not",
  "oughtn't've": "ought not have",
  "shan't": "shall not",
  "sha'n't": "shall not",
  "shan't've": "shall not have",
  "she'd": "she would",
  "she'd've": "she would have",
  "she'll": "she will",
  "she'll've": "she will have",
  "she's": "she is",
  "should've": "should have",
  "shouldn't": "should not",
  "shouldn't've": "should not have",
  "so've": "so have",
  "so's": "so is",
  "that'd": "that would",
  "that'd've": "that would have",
  "that's": "that is",
  "there'd": "there had",
  "there'd've": "there would have",
  "there's": "there is",
  "they'd": "they would",
  "they'd've": "they would have",
  "they'll": "they will",
  "they'll've": "they will have",
  "they're": "they are",
  "they've": "they have",
  "to've": "to have",
  "wasn't": "was not",
  "we'd": "we had",
  "we'd've": "we would have",
  "we'll": "we will",
  "we'll've": "we will have",
  "we're": "we are",
  "we've": "we have",
  "weren't": "were not",
  "what'll": "what will",
  "what'll've": "what will have",
  "what're": "what are",
  "what's": "what is",
  "what've": "what have",
  "when's": "when is",
  "when've": "when have",
  "where'd": "where did",
  "where's": "where is",
  "where've": "where have",
  "who'll": "who will",
  "who'll've": "who will have",
  "who's": "who is",
  "who've": "who have",
  "why's": "why is",
  "why've": "why have",
  "will've": "will have",
  "won't": "will not",
  "won't've": "will not have",
  "would've": "would have",
  "wouldn't": "would not",
  "wouldn't've": "would not have",
  "y'all": "you all",
  "y'alls": "you alls",
  "y'all'd": "you all would",
  "y'all'd've": "you all would have",
  "y'all're": "you all are",
  "y'all've": "you all have",
  "you'd": "you had",
  "you'd've": "you would have",
  "you'll": "you you will",
  "you'll've": "you you will have",
  "you're": "you are",
  "you've": "you have"
}

c_re = re.compile('(%s)' % '|'.join(cList.keys()))

def expandContractions(text, c_re=c_re):
    def replace(match):
        return cList[match.group(0)]
    return c_re.sub(replace, text)

# examples
print expandContractions('Don\'t you get it?')
print expandContractions('I ain\'t got time for y\'alls foolishness')
print expandContractions('You won\'t live to see tomorrow.')
print expandContractions('You\'ve got serious cojones coming in here like that.')
print expandContractions('I hadn\'t\'ve enough')

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