Sharp PW-E500A Specifications

MODEL
Oxford Dictionary of English
Oxford Thesaurus of English
Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
Oxford Crossword Dictionary
Oxford Puzzle Solver
PW-E500A
ELECTRONIC DICTIONARY
OPERATION MANUAL
Page
• Getting Started ........................................................ 3
• Using the Oxford Dictionary of English ................ 15
• Using the Oxford Thesaurus of English ................ 18
• Using the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations .......... 20
• Using the Solver functions .................................... 23
• Using the Super jump function ............................. 26
• Using the History function .................................... 28
• Using the Calculator function ............................... 29
• Using the Converter function ................................ 30
• Appendices ........................................................... 32
• Introductions to the Dictionaries ........................... 35
Introduction
Thank you for purchasing the SHARP Electronic Dictionary, model PW-E500A.
The PW-E500A contains data based on the following dictionaries (see page 5):
• Oxford Dictionary of English
• Oxford Thesaurus of English
• Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
• Oxford Crossword Dictionary
• Oxford Puzzle Solver
After reading this manual, store it in a convenient location for future reference.
NOTICE
• SHARP will not be liable nor responsible for any incidental or consequential economic or property damage caused by misuse and/or malfunction of this product
and its peripherals, unless such liability is acknowledged by law.
• The specification of this product and its accessories, as well as information provided in this manual, is subject to change without prior notice.
CAUTION
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Do not carry the PW-E500A in the back pocket of slacks or trousers.
Do not apply excessive physical pressure on the LCD panel because the glass material may break.
Do not drop the PW-E500A or apply excessive force to it. Bending the unit unduly can damage it.
Do not subject the PW-E500A to extreme temperatures. Do not expose the unit to an extremely humid or dusty environment.
Do not apply extreme force when pressing the keys.
Sharp or hard objects can scratch and damage the unit. Make sure it is adequately protected when carried with other objects.
Since the unit is not waterproof, do not use it or store it where fluids can splash onto it. Raindrops, water spray, juice, coffee, steam, perspiration, etc. will also
cause malfunction.
• Clean only with a soft, dry cloth. Do not use solvents.
• Use only a SHARP approved service facility.
NOTES
• Oxford is a registered trademark of Oxford University Press in the UK and in certain other countries.
• All company and/or product names are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their respective holders.
1
CONTENTS
Getting Started
Using the PW-E500A for the first time ......................................................... 3
Layout ........................................................................................................... 6
Basic operation ............................................................................................. 8
Set-up menu ............................................................................................... 12
Inputting characters .................................................................................... 13
Using the Oxford Dictionary of English
Looking up a word (Filter search) .............................................................. 15
Phrase search .............................................................................................16
Spellcheck function ..................................................................................... 16
Further information ..................................................................................... 17
Using the Oxford Thesaurus of English
Looking up a word (Filter search) .............................................................. 18
Phrase search .............................................................................................19
Further information ..................................................................................... 19
Using the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
Searching by an author name (Filter search) ............................................ 20
Keyword search .......................................................................................... 21
Random quote ............................................................................................ 22
Further information ..................................................................................... 22
Using the Solver functions
Crossword solver ........................................................................................ 23
Puzzle solver .............................................................................................. 24
Anagram solver ........................................................................................... 25
Using the Super jump function
How to use the Super jump function .......................................................... 26
Using the History function
How to use the History function ................................................................. 28
Using the Calculator function
Prior to initiating calculations ..................................................................... 29
Calculation examples ................................................................................. 29
Using the Converter function
Currency converter ..................................................................................... 30
Metric converter .......................................................................................... 31
Appendices
Replacing the battery ................................................................................. 32
Reset procedure if trouble occurs .............................................................. 33
Specifications ............................................................................................. 33
Troubleshooting .......................................................................................... 34
Product support .......................................................................................... 34
Introductions to the Dictionaries
Oxford Dictionary of English ....................................................................... 35
Oxford Thesaurus of English ...................................................................... 48
Oxford Dictionary of Quotations ................................................................. 53
2
Getting Started
Using the PW-E500A for the first time
Be sure to perform the following operations before using the PW-E500A for the first
time.
1. Set the battery replacement switch on the bottom
of the unit to the ‘REPLACE BATTERY’ position.
6. Open the unit and press o to
turn the power on.
The LCD contrast screen will appear.
• Should a different screen appear,
follow the reset procedure on page
33.
• If the power cannot be turned on:
• Make sure the battery replacement switch is placed at the ‘NORMAL
OPERATION’ position, then press o again.
• If the power still cannot be switched on, try following steps 1 through 6 in the
above procedure again.
2. Remove the battery cover.
3. Insert the one battery. Make sure the battery
polarity is correct.
7. Adjust the LCD contrast by using [
], and press e.
The key sound on/off screen will
appear.
8. Select Y or N to turn the key sound
on/off.
4. Replace the battery cover.
5. Set the battery replacement switch to the
‘NORMAL OPERATION’ position.
3
The main menu screen will appear.
• The LCD contrast and the key sound
settings can be adjusted later in the
Set-up menu.
Turning the power on/off
Backlight
The power can be switched on by pressing the keys listed below.
To turn off the power, press o.
This product has a built-in backlight, which allows you to view the display and use
the product even in low-light conditions. Pressing , (Backlight) once illuminates
the display until you have not pressed any keys for approx. 1 minute or press ,
again.
Display status upon start-up
Key
o Restores the display as it was before the unit was switched off
(Resume function).
m The main menu screen appears.
d
The input screen or menu screen of each dictionary appears (Directt
on function)
u
s
y
Auto power off function
To save the battery, the PW-E500A will automatically turn its power off if no key
operations are detected for a set period of time. The activation interval initial setting
is 5 minutes, but it can be adjusted by following the directions on page 13.
• Use the backlight in low-light conditions. It will drain power from the operating
batteries and significantly reduce battery life.
• The backlight may remain on for less than 1 minute when
is displayed.
Key notation used in this manual
• All keys are framed (A, for instance); exceptions are found in the Calculator
section, where the numeral entries are shown with real numbers.
• Keys are often assigned with more than one function. The appropriate key/
function will be shown according to the input status.
<Example 1>
will be shown as either ‘Q’, ‘1’ or ‘1’ depending on the input status.
<Example 2>
To attach a commercially available strap
will be shown as either ‘G’ or ‘+’ depending on the input status.
A carrying strap can be attached, as shown in the picture below (strap not
included).
Caution:
• Do not swing the unit by the strap, or use excessive
force to pull the strap. Doing so will cause a
malfunction or hardware damage to the unit.
Note:
• The functions indicated with green typeface are second functions. Press and
release ^, then press an appropriate key.
<Example 1>
^ l directs to press and release ^, then press l (f).
^ w directs to press and release ^, then press w (<).
Back of the unit
4
Data contained in the PW-E500A
The dictionary data contained in this unit is based on the following dictionaries:
• Oxford Dictionary of English 2e © Oxford University Press 2003
• Oxford Thesaurus of English 2e © Oxford University Press 2004
• Oxford Dictionary of Quotations 6e © Oxford University Press 2004
• Oxford Crossword Dictionary © Oxford University Press 2005
• Oxford Puzzle Solver © Oxford University Press 2005
* All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a
retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior
permission in writing of Oxford University Press, or as expressly permitted by
law, or under terms agreed with the appropriate reprographics rights organization. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside the scope of the above should
be sent to the Rights Department, Oxford University Press.
• The data content of each Dictionary is mostly retained faithful to the original.
However, some sections of the dictionary contents have had to be altered due to
the limitations of the LCD display and for other reasons; these modifications have
been implemented under the provisions of the publisher(s). In some rare cases,
misspellings and/or mistypings may be found; these are ‘errors’ that have been
retained unmodified from the source Dictionaries.
Note:
• For information on the contents of the dictionaries, see Introductions on pages
35–57.
• Some prefatory material and some appendix data included in the printed book of
the dictionaries are not featured in this product.
5
Layout
Display symbols
(Refer to the next page for details)
Display
Dictionary/function
selection keys
Menu key
Font size shift key
Power on/off key
Backlight key
Backspace/Clear key
2nd function key
Utility keys for Dictionaries
Page scroll keys
Escape key
Cursor keys
Enter key
6
Key assignments
Display symbols
: Opens the input screen for the Oxford Dictionary of English
This symbol will be displayed when the battery level is low. Promptly
replace the old battery with a new one.
: Opens the input screen for the Oxford Thesaurus of English
Indicates that the key sound (beep) is set to ON.
: Opens the input screen for the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
Indicates that ^ has been pressed.
: Opens the input screen for the spell checker
These arrows suggest that more contents can be browsed by scrolling up/
down the window.
: Opens the Solver functions menu
{ } : Press to scroll up/down per text row.
< > : Press to scroll up/down per visible window.
: Opens the history list of each Dictionary
: Brings up a ‘digest’ view of descriptions
Note:
• In this manual, symbols are not shown in the display examples.
: Launches a search for entries in the Oxford Dictionary of English or the
Oxford Thesaurus of English matching a term selected in any detail view
: Selects a Note icon in the detail view
: 2nd function key
Activates the second function (printed in green above, below, or to the left
of keys) assigned to the next key pressed.
: Illuminates the display to view in low-light conditions.
7
• Certain symbols may appear on the display only when the LCD contrast is set to
dark. Please ignore these symbols as they are not used by this product.
Operation guidance message
A brief guidance message may appear at the bottom of the screen to help you
utilise functions more effectively.
Basic operation
Inputting words for a dictionary search
In this section, the basic search operation is described. For details, refer to the
manual chapter for each dictionary.
<Example>
Find definitions of ‘convenience’ in the Oxford Dictionary of English.
1. Press d to display the input
screen for the Oxford Dictionary of
English, then input ‘conven’. Entries
starting with ‘conven’ are listed.
Selecting a dictionary / function in the main menu
Press m.
The main menu appears.
• Select an item by its index number
using the number keys (1 through
8). The initial screen of the selected
item appears.
• The desired item can also be selected by using the { } [ ] keys,
followed by pressing the e key.
2. Enter ‘i’ to narrow down the list further.
If the desired word is found, then you
do not need to type any more letters.
3. While the ‘
’ indication is visible on the left of ‘convenience’, press e.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the headwords in the Oxford Dictionary of English.
Note:
• Refer to the section ‘Inputting characters’ on page 13.
• To learn different searching methods from those above, refer to the manual
chapter for each dictionary.
8
List view: selecting an item; scrolling
Filter search view: selecting an item; scrolling
Press d to display the initial screen
of the Oxford Dictionary of English, then
press e. The list view of the Oxford
Dictionary of English appears.
Press d, then type A, and B.
Selecting an item or a word
Selecting each entry
Use the corresponding number key to the index number on the left of each item, or
use the { or } key to place the cursor on the desired item, followed by pressing
the e key.
Use } { to place the cursor (indicated as ‘ ’ on the left of the listed items) at
the desired entry, then press e. The detail view of the entry appears.
Scrolling the view
Refer to the section ‘Scrolling the view’ in the previous section, ‘List view: selecting
an item; scrolling’.
‘ ’ and/or ‘ ’ may appear on the left side of the screen, indicating that more
information can be browsed by scrolling up/down the view.
1) Press } once to scroll down one text row. To scroll back one text row, press {
once.
2) Press > to scroll down a page. Press < to scroll the page up.
• Press and hold these keys to continuously scroll the lines/pages.
9
‘ab’ is entered, and words starting from
‘ab’ listed.
Scrolling the view
Detail view: scrolling
Shifting the displayed character size (z)
Press d, then type A, and e.
The detail view with definitions appears.
Press the z key to shift the character size to be displayed.
12 dot-based (vertical pixel resolution) or 9 dot-based characters can be selected.
For instance, press z to display the 12 dot characters to 9 dot characters.
Press z again to toggle back the displayed characters to 12 dot-base.
Browsing contents above/below the screen
‘ ’ and/or ‘ ’ may appear on the left
side of the screen, indicating that more
information can be browsed by
scrolling up/down the view. Use } {
or > <.
12 dot-based (default)
9 dot-based
• The character size setting will be retained until the next time z is pressed.
• The z key is functional in the following views:
• The list view, detail view, filter search view or Quick view of each Dictionary
Scrolling up/down to the previous/next entry header
Press ^ n to show the next entry header. To show the previous entry
header, press ^ w.
Other useful keys
f:
Returns to the previous view
^ b: Shows the input screen of each Dictionary or the initial display of a
function
^ l: Shows the list view starting from the previously displayed header
• The Super jump window
• The contents of the Note
• The character size setting is saved for each dictionary in both the list view
(including filter search view and Quick view) and the detail view.
Recalling the terms previously searched (h)
The history of up to 30 items in each dictionary is automatically stored, and can be
recalled easily by selecting the word in the history list. (For more information, see
page 28.)
10
Listing a summary of detail view items (q)
Browsing Notes (r)
The Quick view function suppresses some examples and additional information,
and lists out the main sections and senses (or quotations) from each detail view
entry. Use this function to browse quickly through the summary of an entry.
A Note icon (&) may appear in the detail view. This indicates that a note can
be selected to view extra information (additional information, usage note, etc.) of
the entry.
<Example>
Press r to select the icon. If more than one icon is visible, then the topmost
icon will be selected, and use the } { ] [ keys to select the desired icon if
necessary, then press e to view the contents.
1. In the detail view shown on page 10,
press q.
The Quick view screen appears.
To exit, press f twice. The first push of the f key closes the contents view,
then the second deselects the icon.
<Example>
Browse the Note contents of ‘earth’ in the Oxford Dictionary of English.
2. While the relevant sense or section is on the screen, select the desired item by
the index number. The detail view of the selected sense/section appears.
• Press q in the Quick view to display the detail view.
Searching a word on the screen (v)
A word or jump icon ( ) in the detail view can be selected for searching. (For more
information, see page 26.)
1. Open the detail view of ‘earth’.
• The symbol ‘ ’ in front of ‘earth’
means that the word has a Note.
2. Use the > key or } key to scroll down
the view so that a Note icon will be
visible.
3. Press r. The Note icon will be
selected (reversed).
4. Press e. The contents of the
Note is displayed.
11
Set-up menu
Note:
• Using the r key will display the following:
• Oxford Dictionary of English
Press m to display the main menu,
then press 8. The set-up menu appears.
• Usage notes
• Additional (boxed) information
• Oxford Thesaurus of English
• ‘Choose the Right Word’ and Confusables sections
• Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
• The full set of quotations for the given author (see page 21)
• Word Lists (extra items relevant to specific headwords) of the Oxford Thesaurus
of English are indicated by the jump icon ( ). Use the Super jump function.
Select a desired item to change the setting.
• To delete the history list, see page 28.
Setting the key sound on/off
The key sound (a short audible beep when a key is pressed) can be set to on or off.
1. Press m, 8, then 1, to toggle the key sound on or off.
A splash message appears to indicate the change of setting, then the main
menu will be displayed.
12
Setting the Auto power off activation time
Inputting characters
This product automatically turns its power off to save the battery. The turn-off time
is set to five minutes by default.
Methods of inputting characters are described in this section.
1. Press m, 8, then 2.
Character entry
The Auto power off setting screen
appears.
A simple example of inputting characters is shown below.
<Example>
Enter a word ‘clear’ for search.
1. Press d to open the input screen of the Oxford Dictionary of English.
2. Use the {, }, [ and ] keys to place the check mark on the desired
duration, then press e.
The time will be set, then the main menu will be displayed.
2. Type ‘clear’.
On the keyboard, press C, L, E,
A, then R.
Adjusting the LCD contrast
Select this menu item to adjust the LCD contrast.
1. Press m, 8, then 3.
2. To adjust the LCD contrast, use the [ (Lighter) key or ] (Darker) key, then
press e to return to the main menu.
Starting Auto Demo mode
Activate the Auto demo for a guided tour through the key features of the product.
1. Press m, 8, then 5, to start the Auto demo mode.
• Press f or e to end the Auto demo mode and return to the main
menu.
13
Note:
• While entering characters, exclude characters such as spaces (except in
Crossword solver), hyphens, apostrophes, slashes, and periods.
<Example>
Word
fast food
Entry for search
fastfood
weak-kneed
let's
weakkneed
lets
either/or
a.m.
eitheror
am
Modifying entry
• Convert uppercase letters to lowercase.
<Example>
Deleting unnecessary characters
Word
AC
Entry for search
ac
UK
uk
<Example>
1. Press d to open the input screen of the Oxford Dictionary of English.
2. Type ‘external’.
• Spell out the numbers when applicable.
<Example>
Word
4WD
Entry for search
fourwd
A5
afive
• Enter ‘and’ instead of ‘&’.
3. While the cursor is at the end of the string, press ( three times to delete ‘nal’.
4. Next, press [ three times to move the
cursor under the letter ‘t’.
• To enter ‘£’, place ‘l’ instead. Likewise, place ‘a’ for ‘@’ instead.
• When searching for a word with accented characters (such as ‘ü’, ‘á’, etc.), enter
their unaccented equivalents via the keypad (such as ‘u’, ‘a’, etc.).
5. Press ( once to delete a character on the left of cursor. ‘x’ will be deleted.
Adding characters
<Example>
6. In the above example, press N to
insert a letter ‘n’ on the left of the
cursor. The search will be narrowed
with the word ‘enter’.
Note:
• Press ^ b to delete all characters entered.
14
Using the Oxford Dictionary of
English
In this Dictionary, definitions of a word can be found by entering its spelling. You can
also search specifically for phrases by entering one or more keywords in Phrase
search.
Looking up a word (Filter search)
A definition of a word can be looked up by inputting its spelling.
<Example>
Find the definition of ‘advance’.
1. Press d to open the Oxford
Dictionary of English.
The input screen appears.
2. Input the spelling of ‘advance’.
As you type, candidates for matching
narrow. If the desired word is found,
then there is no need to type any more letters.
3. While ‘ ’ appears on the left of ‘advance’, press e. The detail view of the
word appears.
• To browse contents on the next/previous page, press } { or > <. You
may also find the Quick view function useful.
• If a word selected is a close derivative of a headword, it may not have its own
definitions. In these cases, it is helpful to scroll up within the detail view to find
the definitions of the headword itself.
• To search for a word in the detail view, use the Super jump function.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the headwords in the Oxford Dictionary of English.
15
• To search for a different word, simply input a new spelling for the word, or
press ^ b or d to go to the dictionary's input screen.
If there is no match found
As you input the spelling of the desired
word, the dictionary will narrow down the
matching candidates. If the match is
narrowed down to none (i.e. no word starting
with the spelling is found in the Dictionary),
the message ‘similar words’ appears.
In this case, press e to list the
dictionary entries alphabetically after the entered spelling.
Note about entering characters
While entering characters, exclude characters such as spaces, hyphens,
apostrophes, slashes, and periods. See page 13 for details.
Note:
• The wildcard character ‘?’ must not be entered in the input field of the Dictionary.
The wildcard character ‘?’ can be used in the Crossword solver (see page 23)
and Random quote function (see page 22).
• Up to 24 characters can be entered in the input field of the Dictionary. When
searching words containing 25 characters or more, narrow down the search to
select the words from the list manually.
Browsing Notes
When the & icons appear in the detail view, a note can be selected and
browsed. For details, refer to page 11–12.
Note:
• A headword with a Note is marked with an asterisk ( ).
• In many cases, the & icon only appears at the bottom of an entry, but
contains important information about usage of the headword as a whole. If unsure
about usage, scroll down to the bottom of the entry to access any relevant notes.
Phrase search
Spellcheck function
To search for idioms or phrasal verbs, enter up to three words in the input field. The
phrases containing ALL the entered words will be found.
The spellcheck function can be helpful when the exact spelling of a query word is
not known.
<Example>
<Example>
Search for a phrase containing ‘take’ and ‘care’.
You are not sure whether ‘liason’ or ‘liaison’ is correct.
1. Press d to open the Oxford Dictionary of English.
1. Press s to open the input screen
of the spellcheck function.
Press } once to place the cursor at the ‘Phrase search’, then press e.
The input screen of the Phrase search appears.
2. Input ‘take’, press }, followed by
‘care’.
To input more than one word, input
each word in the separate input field.
Use the } { keys to move the
cursor. Each input field can accommodate up to 24 characters.
2. Enter ‘liason’.
3. Press e.
A list of phrases containing the words appears.
If no matching phrase is found, then a message ‘Not Found!’ will momentarily be
displayed.
4. Select the desired index of the phrase using the number key(s). The definition of
the selected phrase is displayed.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the index of phrases containing the words.
• To search for a new phrase, simply begin inputting new words, or press ^
b to go back to the input screen to start a new search.
3. Press e to initiate the spellcheck
function.
Words with similar spellings will be
listed.
• While ‘Searching... Press [ENTER] to
break’ is visible, press e to
stop the search. Note that if the search is interrupted, the list of possible
results may not include all the closest matches.
• If the word is typed with the correct spelling, it will appear at the top of the
displayed list.
• If two or more words with an identical spelling are found in the list, then the
relevant headword will also be displayed, after an arrow symbol.
16
4. In the list, select a desired word using the number keys (press 1, in this
example). The detail view with descriptions of the word is displayed.
• If a word selected is not in its original form, and cannot be found as a
headword, then the detail view of the word's original form will be displayed. It
may be necessary to scroll down within the detail view to find the desired
word form.
• Press f to go back to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the headwords in the Oxford Dictionary of English.
Note:
• Up to 100 words may be displayed in the list.
If the list of words does not appear as expected:
• Searching words with particular spellings may take more time to complete than
others.
• If no word is given, a message ‘Not Found!’ will momentarily be displayed,
followed by the input screen of the spellcheck function. In this case you may wish
to start the search again with a new spelling for the word.
Further information
For further information on using this dictionary, refer to the Introduction on pages
35–48.
17
Using the Oxford Thesaurus of
English
Input a word in this Thesaurus to find its synonyms, as well as antonyms and other
related terms in the detail view.
• To search for a word or jump icon ( ) in the detail view, use the Super jump
function.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the headwords in the Oxford Thesaurus of English.
• To search for a different word, simply begin inputting a new word, or press
^ b or t to go to the input screen of the Oxford Thesaurus of
English.
Looking up a word (Filter search)
If there is no match found
Find a set of alternative words by inputting the spelling of a given word.
The same view/message appears as for the Oxford Dictionary of English. See page
15 for details.
<Example>
Find a set of alternative words for ‘make’.
Note about entering characters
1. Press t to open the Oxford
Thesaurus of English.
While entering characters, exclude characters such as spaces, hyphens,
apostrophes, slashes, and periods. See page 13 for details.
The spelling input screen of the
Thesaurus appears.
Note:
• Up to 24 characters can be entered in the input field. When searching words
containing 25 characters or more, narrow down the search to select the words
from the list manually.
2. Input ‘make’.
As you type, options are narrowed. If
the desired word is found, then you do
not need to type any more letters.
Browsing Notes
When the & icons appear in the detail view, a note can be selected and
browsed. For details, refer to page 11–12.
3. While ‘ ’ appears on the left of ‘make’,
press e. The detail view of the
word ‘make’ appears.
• To browse contents on the next/
previous page, press } { or >
<. You may also find the Quick
view function useful.
18
Phrase search
Further information
To search for idioms or phrasal verbs, enter up to three words in the input field. The
phrases containing ALL the entered words will be found.
For further information on using this thesaurus, refer to the Introduction on pages
48–52.
<Example>
Search for a phrase containing ‘make’ and ‘up’, and find its synonyms.
1. Press t to open the Oxford Thesaurus of English.
Press } once to place the cursor at the ‘Phrase search’, then press e.
The input screen of the Phrase search appears.
2. Input ‘make’, press }, followed by
‘up’.
To input more than one word, input
each word in the separate input field.
Use the } { keys to move the
cursor. Each input field can accommodate up to 24 characters.
3. Press e.
A list of phrases containing the words appears.
If no matching phrase is found, then a message ‘Not Found!’ will momentarily be
displayed.
4. Select the desired index of the phrase using the number key(s). The detail view
of the selected phrase is displayed.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the index of phrases containing the words.
• To search for a new phrase, simply begin inputting new words, or press ^
b to go back to the input screen to start a new search.
19
Using the Oxford Dictionary of
Quotations
Input an author’s surname in the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations to find his/her
quotations. A search can also be initiated by keywords, or it is possible to display
quotations at random.
Searching by an author name (Filter search)
Find a set of related quotations by inputting the spelling of an author.
<Example>
List a set of quotations by ‘William Shakespeare’.
1. Press u to open the Oxford
Dictionary of Quotations.
The name input screen of the Oxford
Dictionary of Quotations appears.
• To browse contents on the next/previous page, press } { or > <. You
may also find the Quick view function useful.
• To search for a word in the detail view, or to search for an item indicated under
the , use the Super jump function.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the headings in the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations.
• To search for a different word, simply begin inputting the spelling for the new
word, or press ^ b or u to go to the input screen of the Oxford
Dictionary of Quotations.
If there is no match found
The matching headings narrow down as you type. If the match is narrowed down to
none, a message ‘similar words’ will be displayed. Press e to list the headers
that alphabetically follow the entered string.
Note about entering characters
While entering characters, exclude characters such as spaces, hyphens,
apostrophes, slashes, and periods. See page 13 for details.
Note:
2. Start to input the word ‘shakespeare’.
As you type, the match narrows. If the
desired word is found, then you do not
need to type any more letters.
• In this example, the rows headed by
‘ ’ contain subheadings within the
entry for ‘William Shakespeare’.
3. While ‘ ’ appears to the left of ‘William
Shakespeare’, press e. The
detail view of the entry ‘William
Shakespeare’ appears.
• The names of collections or compilations, such as the ‘Bible’ or ‘Anonymous’, can
be used for a search.
• Instead of inputting an author's surname, you might wish to try entering his/her
known pseudonym or nickname (see pages 55–57 for details).
• Some authors may appear in a joint entry with a common co-author or associate,
as well as their own individual entry. In these cases, the author's name is listed
twice in search results, ordered according to the first name in the joint entry. The
detail view automatically scrolls down so the search term is at the top - if this is
part of a larger entry, the up arrow will appear top left.
20
Keyword search
The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations can accept up to three keywords for a search.
The quotations containing ALL the entered keywords will be found.
<Example>
Find quotations that incorporate ‘man’ and ‘woman’.
1. Press u to open the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations.
Press the } key to place the cursor at the ‘Keyword search’, then press
e.
The input screen of the Keyword search appears.
2. Input ‘man’, press the } key, then
input ‘woman’.
Up to 24 characters can be entered in
each input field. To jump the cursor
from one input field to another, use the
{ } keys.
3. Press e.
The search results of the Oxford
Dictionary of Quotations are listed. If
no match is found, a message ‘Not
Found!’ will momentarily be displayed.
Note:
• The list consists of essential words in the quotations that include the given
keyword. Even if more than two keywords are given, the list will consist of
essential words in the quotations that include the first keyword.
• Singular and plural nouns must be searched for separately. Words such as ‘man’
and ‘men’, as well as ‘lover’ and ‘lovers’, are to be searched as two different words.
• To search for compound words such as ‘Holy Ghost’, ‘middle class’, and ‘selfmade’, modify the entry by eliminating space and hyphen (i.e. ‘holyghost’,
‘middleclass’, and ‘selfmade’), to form a single keyword.
21
4. Select the desired quotation using the
number keys (press 2, in this
example). The details of the selected
quotation appear.
• The Quick view function cannot be
activated from this screen.
• The name of the author and the Note icon (&) will appear on the first or
second row.
While the Note icon is visible on the screen, press r and e to
view the full set of quotations of the author (the same result can be viewed by
initiating the search by entering the name of the author).
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the search results.
• To initiate a new search, simply start typing, or press ^ b to go to the
input screen of the keyword search.
Random quote
Random quote can be requested by pressing the ? at the initial screen of the
Oxford Dictionary of Quotations or in the detail view of the author.
<Example>
1. Press u to open the initial screen of the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations.
2. Press ?. A randomly selected
quotation is displayed.
• Press ? several times to
sequentially initiate the Random
quotes.
• Press f to return to the initial
screen of the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations.
• The name of the author and the Note icon (&) will appear on the first or
second row.
While the Note icon is visible on the screen, press r and e to
view the full set of quotations of the author (the same result can be viewed by
initiating the search by entering the name of the author).
Further information
For further information on using this dictionary, refer to the Introduction on pages
53–57.
22
Using the Solver functions
Crossword solver
To search for words with incomplete spellings using the Oxford Crossword
Dictionary, enter a wildcard character, ‘?’, anywhere a character is not known. Place
the appropriate number of ‘?’ characters in the places of characters yet to be
determined. To put a space between words, enter ^ i (r key).
A list of the lemmas with the given number and pattern of letters appears. In this
example, the list would be the total number of 6-letter patterns consisting of a 2letter and a 4-letter word (2, 4 (6) letters).
• To see other words/expressions with the same number(s) of letters, use < or
> to scroll up/down. Use ^ w or ^ n to jump to the
previous or next pattern list.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to see the list of all patterns (e.g., 5 letters).
<Example>
• To search for the available details of a word, use the Super jump function.
Find a matching compound or expression for the pattern ‘go ????’.
• To initiate another search, simply type in the new spelling or press ^ b
to return to the input screen of the Crossword solver.
1. Press y to open the Solver
functions menu.
2. Press 1 to open the Crossword
solver.
The Crossword solver's input screen
appears.
3. Type ‘go ????’ into the input field. To
enter ‘ ????’, press ^ i to
enter a space and ? four times.
4. Press e to start the search.
A list of the wildcard matches appear.
5. In the list, select a desired word using
the number keys or press { } and
e.
23
Notes:
• Unknown characters within single or multiple words can be replaced with
question marks, ‘?’, as in ‘ma???n’ or ‘g? b???’.
• Multiple word patterns up to a maximum of six words can be searched.
• Up to a maximum of 25 letters can be searched for (not counting spaces).
• The Crossword Dictionary database does not include regular inflections, so if
your original search does not give you the required answer, try removing any
final -s, -ed, or -ing, and search again.
Puzzle solver
The Puzzle solver can be searched by category (such as names of writers, famous
films, types of car, examples of plants, and a whole host of other useful categories)
to find a word (clue word).
This was incorporated to provide easy-to-find answers to general knowledge clues
and quiz questions and thereby be useful while playing a wide variety of games.
<Example>
Find words related to ‘wine’.
1. Press y and 2 to open the
Puzzle solver.
4. Press v four times to
select ‘wine and grape varieties’, and
press e twice.
A list of words in the ‘wine and grape
varieties’ category appears, ordered
first by word length, then alphabetically.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to list the category names.
• To search for the details of the selected word, use the Super jump function.
• To initiate another search, simply type in the new spelling or press ^ b
to return to the input screen of the Puzzle solver.
5. Press f twice and press { twice
to select ‘colours’, and then press
e twice.
2. Type ‘wine’ into the input field.
As you type, the number of matching
list titles/items is narrowed down.
• The matching list items (in plain
style) and list titles (in bold style) are
listed.
3. With ‘ ’ appearing on the left of ’wine’,
press e.
A list of category names related to
‘wine’ (the clue word) appears.
• Select the jump icon ( ) in the list
using the Super jump function.
A list of words related to ‘colours’
category appears.
• Press > several times to find
‘wine’.
Note:
• Some additional clue words are included in the index to aid access, without
themselves being items in the list (e.g. ‘monster’ links to the ‘mythical creatures’
list).
If there is no match found
The same view/message appears as the Oxford Dictionary of English. See page 15
for details.
• Press ^ l to list the clue words.
24
Entering characters
Anagram solver
When entering characters, exclude those such as spaces, hyphens, apostrophes,
slashes, and periods. See page 13 for details.
A word or series of letters can be entered to find any matching anagrams found in
the Oxford Crossword Dictionary.
Note:
<Example>
• The wildcard character ‘?’ must not be entered into the input field of the Puzzle
solver.
The wildcard character ‘?’ can only be used in the Crossword solver (see page
23) or the Random quote function (see page 22).
• Up to 24 characters can be entered into the input field of the Puzzle solver.
When searching for words containing 25 characters or more, narrow down the
search and select the words from the list manually.
Find anagrams for ‘dear’.
1. Press y and 3 to open the
Anagram solver, then type ‘dear’ into
the input field.
2. Press e to initiate the search.
Up to 100 words may be displayed in
the list.
3. In the list of matches, use the number keys to select a word.
A list of the lemmas with the given number of letters appears. In this example,
the list would be the total number of words consisting of 4 letters.
• To see other words/expressions with the same number(s) of letters, use < or
> to scroll up/down. Use ^ w or ^ n to jump to the
previous or next pattern list.
• Press f to return to the previous view.
• Press ^ l to see the list of all patterns (e.g., 5 letters).
• To initiate another search, simply type in the new spelling or press ^ b
to return to the input screen of the Anagram solver.
Note
• For the Anagram solver, not only single word but also multiword solutions will be
offered - e.g. ‘gono’ finds ‘go on’ and ‘no go’ as well as ‘goon’.
• The Crossword Dictionary database does not include regular inflections, so if
your original search does not give you the required answer, try removing an -s,
-ed, or -ing, and search again.
25
Using the Super jump function
Use the Super jump function to select any word in the detail view of each dictionary,
then initiate a search based on the selected word.
How to use the Super jump function
<Example>
Initiate a Super jump search via the Oxford Dictionary of English.
1. In the Oxford Dictionary of English, show the detail view of the word ‘function’.
2. Press v. The cursor
appears to select the first word in the
view.
3. Use the } { ] [ keys to move the cursor (and its selection of word) to a
desired word.
• The pressing of v moves the cursor to the next.
4. While the desired word is selected,
press e.
5. Use the number keys to select a desired word in the list (press 1 in this
example).
The definition of the selected word is displayed in the Super jump window.
• Press f to go back to the previous view.
• When ‘ ’ and/or ‘ ’ appears on the left side of the window, } { or >
< can be used to scroll the window.
6. Press e to jump to the definition
of the selected word.
The detail view of the selected word
appears.
• Press f to display the previous
view.
Note:
• A Super jump search from any of the dictionaries will return matching entries
in the following dictionaries:
• Oxford Dictionary of English
• Oxford Thesaurus of English
• For items marked with a jump icon ( ) found in the Oxford Dictionary of
Quotations, the Oxford Thesaurus of English or the Solver functions, the
Super jump executes a cross-reference upon selection.
The Super jump window appears to
display selectable items.
• A list of matching words is displayed.
If the selected word is in a variant or
inflected form, the original spelling may be displayed instead.
• If only one match is found, or if an item indicated by the jump icon ( ) is
selected, then the description of the item will be displayed in the Super jump
window instead.
26
Specifying a Dictionary to jump to
In step 4 above, press d or t instead of pressing e, to specify the
Dictionary to jump to.
Note icon in the Super jump window
When the Note icon appears in the Super jump window, press r and e
to view the contents.
About the detail view after the jump
• The behaviour and function of the detail view is the same as the detail view after
an ordinary search.
• Press ^ b at the detail view to go back to the Dictionary's input screen.
• A chain of multiple Super jump actions can be backtracked up to 10 times by
pressing the f key.
27
Using the History function
Use the History function to recall a headword or phrase previously searched in the
Dictionaries.
• The items selected by the Random quote in the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
will also be added in the history.
Deleting a history item
1. Display the history list on the screen.
How to use the History function
2. Use the } or { key to place the cursor on the word to be deleted. The reverse
colour indicates the selected item.
<Example>
3. Press (. A confirmation dialog for deletion appears.
Recall the search history in the Oxford Dictionary of English.
4. Press Y. The selected word is deleted.
1. Press d to open the Oxford Dictionary of English.
Deleting the history list of a Dictionary
2. Press h. The history view
appears, with the most recent search
placed at the top of the list.
2. Press 4 to select ‘Deleting history’.
When ‘ ’ and/or ‘ ’ appears on the
left side of the window, } { or >
< can be used to scroll the window.
3. Use the number keys to select a desired word in the list.
The detail view of the selected word appears.
Note:
1. Press m, then 8 to open the Set-up menu.
3. Use the number keys to select the history list you wish to delete. A confirmation
dialog for deletion appears.
• To delete all history lists, select ‘ALL’.
• Selecting ‘only DICT’ or ‘only THES’ will also delete the history list of each
phrase search.
4. Press Y. The selected history is deleted and the main menu appears.
• Each Dictionary has its own history list. Additionally, phrase search history list of
each of the Oxford Dictionary of English and the Oxford Thesaurus of English is
made.
• Solver functions (Crossword solver, Puzzle solver and Anagram solver) have no
history list.
• To view the history list, press h at the initial screen of each Dictionary,
and the initial screen of each phrase search.
• Truncated words in the list are indicated with trailing ‘...’ at the end.
• Each history list can contain up to 30 items. The oldest item will be deleted as
item count exceeds 30.
28
Using the Calculator function
The built-in calculator in the Electronic Dictionary can perform 12-digit arithmetic
calculations with memory function. To access the Calculator function, press m
then 6 to select ‘Calculator’.
Calculation examples
Example
(–24) ÷ 4 – 2 =
Operation
! - 24 / 4 - 2 =
34 + 57 =
45 + 57 =
34 + 57 = The second figure (57)
= becomes the constant.
45
68 × 25 =
(Subtraction and division are performed in
the same way as above.)
68 * 25 = The first figure (68)
1,700.
68 × 40 =
What is 10% of 200?
40 = becomes the constant.
200 * 10 %
2,720.
20.
Prior to initiating calculations
• Before performing any calculation, press @ @ ^ b to clear the
memory and the display.
• To start a calculation with a negative number, place a subtraction sign by
pressing - at the beginning of the calculation.
• If you wish to correct a wrong entry, press ! and re-enter the figure.
What percentage is 9 of 36? 9 / 36 %
200 + 10 %
200 + (200 × 10 %) =
Display
–8.
91.
102.
25.
220.
• In the calculation examples found in this section, indications and icons that may
appear on the screen (‘=’, ‘M+’, ‘M–’, ‘+’, ‘–’, ‘×’, and ‘÷’) are abbreviated or are
not shown. These icons appear to show you the interim result of calculations. For
example, the ‘=’ icon appears on the screen when = or % is pressed, while
icons such as ‘M+’ and ‘+’ appear after each corresponding key has been
pressed.
500 – (500 × 20 %) =
(43)2 =
500 - 20 %
4*==*=
400.
4,096.
1/8
8/=
0.125
84 / 3 #
• An ‘M’ is shown when a value other than 0 is put in the memory. To clear the
content of the memory, press @ twice. Note that the pressing of $ or #
also functions as =.
–) 84 ÷ 3 =
28.
+) 68 + 17 =
68 + 17 $
85.
(Total) =
@
• Press
to enter ‘=’. To input ‘.’ (decimal point), press
25 × 5 =
@ @ 12 + 14 $
.
• An error message ‘E’ is displayed if:
• the integer section of a calculation result exceeds 12 digits
M
M
M
182.
M
26.
M
135 * @ =
(12 + 14) ÷ 5 =
@/5=
@@^b
123456789098 × 145 =
123456789098 * 145 =
17.9012344192
17.9012344192
!
(17.9012344192 × 1012 = 17901234419200)
• an attempt is made to divide a number by zero.
29
M
125.
135 × (12 + 14) =
• the memory exceeds 12 digits
Press ! to clear the error condition.
@ @ 25 * 5 $
3,510.
M
5.2
0.
E
Using the Converter function
The Converter function consists of two converters: the Currency converter, and the
Metric converter.
3. Use the { } keys to place the cursor at the desired input field, then input the
currency name and its rate. In this example, press } and input ‘0.7’.
• The currency name field of currency converter is temporarily pre-defined, as
seen in the above example.
Currency converter
• When inputting the desired currency name, press ^ b to clear the
input field and use no more than four letters. Use the [ ] keys to set the
cursor on the left/right of the currently selected input field.
Setting a currency rate
• In the left input field, enter the base currency name. In the input field on the
right, place the currency name of which you wish to set the conversion rate.
One conversion rate can be set.
<Example>
Set the following rate: £1 = €0.7
1. Press m 7 1 to access the
Currency converter.
• Up to 10 digits (excluding the decimal point) can be entered in the currency
rate input field.
4. Press e. The currency name and its rate are set.
Converting currencies
The conversion calculation can be performed using the previously set conversion
rate.
<Example>
Convert €175 to pounds (£) when setting the rate: £1 = €0.7.
2. Press <. The input fields for the
currency name and rate appear.
1. Press m 7 1 to display the currency converter.
2. Input ‘175’. You may input a simple formula, such as ‘35 × 5 =’, instead.
3. Press [ to execute the conversion from € to £. The converted value of £250 is
displayed.
• Pressing ] executes a £-to-€ conversion. In this case, the converted value
of €122.5 will be displayed.
• The
and
arrows on the screen indicate the direction of conversion.
• To initiate conversion of a different value, just enter the value to be converted,
or press ! to clear the value in the input field prior to entering the new
conversion.
• Press f to return to the Converter menu.
30
Metric converter
Units capable of being converted
Conversions between different units of measurement (length, mass, etc.) can be
performed.
The following conversion formulae can be utilised.
<Example>
length1:
Convert 40 feet to metres.
length2:
feet ⇔ m
1. Press m 7 2 to access the Metric converter.
length3:
yard ⇔ m
2. Use { } to select ‘Converter
[length2]’.
length4:
mile ⇔ km
inch ⇔ cm
weight1:
ounce ⇔ g
weight2:
pound ⇔ kg
temperature:
volume:
°F ⇔ °C
pint ⇔ litre
3. Input ‘40’. You may input a simple formula, such as ‘25 + 15 =’, instead.
surface area1:
mile2 ⇔ km2
4. Press ]. The value in feet is converted to the metric value.
surface area2:
acre ⇔ hectare
• Press [ to convert from the metric value to feet. In this case, the given value
‘40’ will be taken as the metric value to be converted to feet.
• The
and
arrows on the screen indicate the direction of conversion.
• To initiate conversion of a different value, just enter the value to be converted,
or press ! to clear the value in the input field prior to entering the new
conversion.
• Use the } or { key to select one of the other Metric converters.
• Press f to return to the Converter menu.
31
When to replace the battery
Appendices
Replace the battery immediately in the following cases:
• When
Replacing the battery
Note:
Battery used
• Use only the specified alkaline battery.
Type
Alkaline battery
is displayed.
• When the message ‘Replace the battery’ appears upon turning the power on.
Size / Model
Quantity
Size “AAA” / LR03
1
Precautions
• Fluid from a leaking battery accidentally entering an eye could result in serious
injury. Should this occur, wash with clean water and immediately consult a
doctor.
• Should fluid from a leaking battery come in contact with your skin or clothes,
immediately wash with clean water.
• If the product is not to be used for some time, to avoid damage to the unit from a
leaking battery, remove it and store in a safe place.
• Do not leave an exhausted battery inside the product. It may leak and damage
the product.
• If you do not follow the procedure describing battery replacement, the History
list, as well as the Calculator's memory, may be cleared or altered. Also,
Currency converter and the Set-up menu configurations may be reset.
• When
is displayed, the backlight will not operate.
Replacement procedure
1. Switch off the power by pressing o.
2. Set the battery replacement switch located on the
bottom of the unit to the ‘REPLACE BATTERY’ position.
3. Remove the battery cover.
4. Remove the used battery and insert the one new
battery. Make sure the battery polarity is correctly
orientated.
5. Replace the battery cover.
• Keep batteries out of the reach of children.
6. Set the battery replacement switch to the ‘NORMAL
OPERATION’ position.
• Incorrect handling of batteries may introduce risk of explosion.
7. Open the unit and press o to turn the power on.
• Do not throw batteries into a fire as they may explode.
• Make sure the new battery is the correct type before fitting.
• When installing, orientate the battery correctly as indicated in the unit.
• The battery packaged with this product may be partially exhausted during the
shipment and/or storage period, and may need to be replaced sooner than
expected.
The LCD contrast screen appears.
• If the power cannot be switched on, try following steps 2 through 7 in the
above procedure again. Should this fail, then follow the reset procedure on the
following page.
8. Follow the instructions on the screen to adjust the LCD contrast, as well as to set
the key sound on/off configuration (see steps 7 through 8 of the procedure on
page 3).
32
Reset procedure if trouble occurs
Specifications
Exposure to a strong physical shock or powerful electrical fields may render the
keys inoperable, to the point that the power cannot be switched on. If such case is
suspected, try following the procedure below.
Model:
PW-E500A
Product name:
Electronic Dictionary
Display:
159 × 80 dot matrix LCD
Reset procedures
Number of entries:
• Oxford Dictionary of English:
Approx. 355,000 words, phrases, and definitions
1. Press the RESET switch located on the bottom of
the unit, with the tip of a ball-point pen or similar
object. Do not use an object with a breakable or
sharp tip.
• Oxford Thesaurus of English:
Approx. 600,000 alternative and opposite words
• Oxford Dictionary of Quotations:
Approx. 20,000 quotations, comprehensively indexed
Approx. 3,200 authors
The message ‘Do you want to initialize?’ appears.
• Oxford Crossword Dictionary:
Over 150,000 words and expressions, from 1 to 6
words in length
2. Press Y to initialize the unit.
• A message ‘Initialized!’ is momentarily displayed, followed by the LCD contrast
adjustment screen.
• Oxford Puzzle Solver:
50,000 items listed in over 500 categories
• If N is selected, then the unit will not be initialized.
3. Follow the instructions on the screen to adjust the LCD contrast, as well as to set
the key sound on/off configuration (see steps 7 through 8 of the procedure on
page 3.)
Calculator function:
12-digit calculation of addition, subtraction,
multiplication, division, percentage, memory
calculation, etc.
Note:
Converter function:
12-digit conversion of currency and measurement
Power consumption:
0.23 W
Operating temperature:
0°C - 40°C (32°F - 104°F)
– (DC): Alkaline battery LR03 (size “AAA”) × 1
1.5 V …
• The reset procedure will clear the History list, and Calculator's memory, as
well as to reset the Currency converter and the Set-up menu configurations. To avoid these, you may press N at step two of the above.
• After the N key is pressed as described in the case above, or even when the
o key is pressed, the reset procedure may automatically be initiated due
to the detection of corrupt data. If this occurs, the message ‘Initialized!’ will be
displayed, followed by the LCD contrast screen. Follow the instructions to set the
LCD contrast, as well as to set the key sound on/off configuration.
Power supply:
Battery life:
• Approx. 200 hours
If data is continuously displayed at 25°C (77°F)
without backlight
• Approx. 70 hours
If data is searched for 5 minutes and displayed for
55 minutes per hour at 25°C (77°F) without backlight
33
0123456789.,
0123456789.,
0123456789.,
• Approx. 55 hours
If data is searched for 5 minutes and displayed for
55 minutes with 2 minute backlight use per hour at
25°C (77°F)
Note: May vary according to various usage conditions
The key sound cannot be heard.
• The key sound may be set to OFF. See page 12.
The unit does not respond to a key press.
• Press the RESET switch. See page 33.
Weight (including battery): Approx. 156 g (0.35 lb)
Dimensions (when closed): 125 mm (W) × 79.4 mm (D) × 16.8 mm (H)
4-29/32” (W) × 3-1/8” (D) × 21/32” (H)
Accessories:
Alkaline battery LR03 (size “AAA”) × 1,
operation manual
Troubleshooting
Refer to the list of possible symptoms, and solutions may be found here.
The unit cannot be switched on.
• Check if the battery is not drained. See page 32.
• Check the battery replacement switch; it should be set at the ‘NORMAL
OPERATION’ position. See page 3.
The unit shuts off automatically.
• The Auto power off function is in action. The activation interval of the Auto
power off function can be adjusted. See page 13.
The desired word cannot be found.
• A variant form of the word may have been entered. Enter the original form.
• Use the Spellcheck function to verify spellings.
Product support
If you have read this operation manual, but you still require product support, you
can:
• Check the polarity of the battery. See page 3.
Visit our web site
• Verify the LCD contrast setting; the power may be switched on, but the
message on the screen may not be visible. See page 13.
http://www.sharp.co.uk
• If the above settings appear normal, then press the RESET switch. See page
33.
Or Telephone
08705 274277
The backlight cannot be switched on.
• Check if the battery is exhausted. See page 32.
The screen is dark or light.
• Adjust the LCD contrast. See page 13.
34
nose
Introductions to the
Dictionaries
Oxford Dictionary of English
Introduction
The Oxford Dictionary of English has been compiled according to principles which
are quite different from those of traditional dictionaries. New types of evidence are
now available in sufficient quantity to allow lexicographers to construct a picture of
the language that is more accurate than has been possible before. The approach to
structuring and organizing within individual dictionary entries has been rethought,
as has the approach to the selection and presentation of information in every
aspect of the dictionary: definitions, choice of examples, grammar, word histories,
and every other category. New approaches have been adopted in response to a
reappraisal of the workings of language in general and its relationship to the
presentation of information in a dictionary in particular. The aim of this introduction
is to give the user background information for using this dictionary and, in
particular, to explain some of the thinking behind these new approaches.
Structure: Core Sense and Subsense
The first part of speech is the primary one for that word: thus, for bag and balloon
the senses of the noun are given before those for the verb, while for babble and
bake the senses of the verb are given before those of the noun.
CORE SENSE
the part projecting above the mouth on the face of a person or animal,
containing the nostrils and used for breathing and smelling.
SUBSENSE
the sense of smell,
especially a dog’s ability to
track something by its scent:
a dog with a keen nose.
SUBSENSE
figurative an instinctive
talent for detecting
something:
he has a nose for a
good script.
SUBSENSE
the aroma of a particular
substance, especially
wine.
Within each part of speech the first definition given is the core sense. The general
principle on which the senses in the Oxford Dictionary of English are organized is
that each word has at least one core meaning, to which a number of subsenses
may be attached. If there is more than one core sense (see below), this is
introduced by a bold sense number. Core meanings represent typical, central uses
of the word in question in modern standard English, as established by research on
and analysis of the Oxford English Corpus and other citation databases. The core
meaning is the one accepted by native speakers as the most literal and central in
ordinary modern usage. This is not necessarily the same as the oldest meaning,
because word meanings change over time. Nor is it necessarily the most frequent
meaning, because sometimes the most frequently used modern sense of a word is
a figurative one.
The core sense also acts as a gateway to other, related subsenses. These
subsenses are grouped under the core sense, each one being introduced by a solid
square symbol.
There is a logical relationship between each subsense and the core sense under
which it appears. The organization of senses according to this logical relationship is
designed to help the user, not only in being able to navigate the entry more easily
and find relevant senses more readily, but also in building up an understanding of
how senses in the language relate to one another and how the language is
constructed on this model. The main types of relationship of core sense to
subsense are as follows:
35
(a) figurative extension of the core sense, e.g.
HEADWORD: logjam
CORE SENSE: a crowded mass of logs blocking a river.
SUBSENSE: figurative a situation that seems irresolvable:
EXAMPLE:
the president can use his power to break the logjam over
this issue.
SUBSENSE: figurative a backlog:
EXAMPLE:
keeping a diary may ease the logjam of work.
HEADWORD: bankrupt
CORE SENSE: (of a person or organization) declared in law as unable to pay
their debts:
SUBSENSE: figurative completely lacking in a particular good quality:
EXAMPLE:
their cause is morally bankrupt.
(b) specialized case of the core sense, e.g.
HEADWORD: ball1
CORE SENSE: a single throw, kick, or hit of the ball in a game, in particular:
SUBSENSE: Cricket a delivery of the ball by the bowler to the batsman.
SUBSENSE: Baseball a pitch delivered outside the strike zone which the
batter does not attempt to hit.
HEADWORD: basement
(c) other extension or shift in meaning, retaining one or more
elements of the core sense, e.g.
HEADWORD: bamboo
CORE SENSE: [mass noun] a giant woody grass which is grown chiefly in the
tropics.
SUBSENSE: the hollow jointed stem of this plant, used as a cane or to make
furniture and implements.
HEADWORD: management
CORE SENSE: the process of dealing with or controlling things or people.
SUBSENSE: [treated as sing. or pl.] the people managing a company or
organization, regarded collectively:
EXAMPLE:
management were extremely cooperative.
HEADWORD: ambassador
CORE SENSE: an accredited diplomat sent by a state as its permanent
representative in a foreign country.
SUBSENSE: a representative or promoter of a specified activity:
EXAMPLE:
he is a good ambassador for the industry.
Many entries have just one core sense. However some entries are more complex
and have different strands of meaning, each constituting a core sense. In this case,
each core sense is introduced by a bold sense number, and each potentially has its
own block of subsenses relating to it.
CORE SENSE: the floor of a building which is partly or entirely below ground
level.
SUBSENSE: Geology the oldest formation of rocks underlying a particular
area.
36
Specialist Vocabulary
Encyclopedic Material
One of the most important uses of a dictionary is to provide explanations of terms
in specialized fields which are unfamiliar to a general user. Yet in many traditional
dictionaries the definitions have been written by specialists as if for other
specialists, and as a result the definitions are often opaque and difficult for the
general user to understand.
Some British dictionaries do not include entries for the names of people and places
and other proper names. The argument for this is based on a distinction between
‘words’ and ‘facts’, by which dictionaries are about ‘words’ while encyclopedias and
other reference works are about ‘facts’. The distinction is an interesting theoretical
one but in practice there is a considerable overlap: names such as Shakespeare
and England are as much part of the language as words such as drama or
language, and belong in a large dictionary.
One of the primary aims of the Oxford Dictionary of English has been to break
down the barriers to understanding specialist vocabulary. The challenge has been,
on the one hand, to give information which is comprehensible, relevant, and
readable, suitable for the general user, while on the other hand maintaining the high
level of technical information and accuracy suitable for the more specialist user.
This has been achieved in some cases, notably entries for plants and animals and
chemical substances, by separating out technical information, eg Latin names,
chemical formulae, from the rest of the definition (shown immediately after a bullet).
For examples, see balloonfish and benzopyrene.
In other cases, it is achieved by giving additional explanatory information within the
definition itself, typically in a separate sentence. For examples, see curling and
cuttlebone.
As elsewhere, the purpose is to give information which is relevant and interesting,
aiming not just to define the word but also to describe and explain its context in the
real world. Additional information of this type, where it is substantial, is given in the
form of separate note (&). For examples, see earth and Eocene.
An especially important feature of the Oxford Dictionary of English is the coverage
of animals and plants. In-depth research and a thorough review have been carried
out for animals and plants throughout the world and, as a result, a large number of
entries have been included which have never before been included in general
dictionaries. The style and presentation of these entries follow the general
principles for specialist vocabulary in the Oxford Dictionary of English: the entries
not only give the technical information, but also describe, in everyday English, the
appearance and other characteristics (of behaviour, medicinal or culinary use,
mythological significance, reason for the name, etc.) and the typical habitat and
distribution. For examples, see mesosaur, kowari and hiba.
37
The Oxford Dictionary of English includes all those terms forming part of the
enduring common knowledge of English speakers, regardless of whether they are
classified as ‘words’ or ‘names’. The information given is the kind of information that
people are likely to need from a dictionary, however that information may be
traditionally classified. Both the style of definitions in the Oxford Dictionary of
English and the inclusion of additional material in separate blocks reflect this
approach.
The Oxford Dictionary of English includes more than 4,500 place-name entries,
4,000 biographical entries, and just under 3,000 other proper names. The entries
are designed to provide not just the basic facts (such as birth and death dates, full
name, and nationality), but also a brief context giving information about, for
example, a person's life and why he or she is important.
For a few really important encyclopedic entries–for example, countries–a fuller
treatment is given and additional information is given in a separate note (&).
Grammar
In recent years grammar has begun to enjoy greater prominence than in previous
decades. It is once again being taught explicitly in state schools throughout Britain
and elsewhere. In addition there is a recognition that different meanings of a word
are closely associated with different lexical and syntactic patterns. The Oxford
Dictionary of English records and exemplifies the most important of these patterns
at the relevant senses of each word, thus giving guidance on language use as well
as word meaning.
For example, with the word bomb, it is possible to distinguish the main senses of
the verb simply on the basis of the grammar: whether the verb takes a direct object,
no direct object, or no direct object plus an obligatory adverbial:
CORE SENSE: attack *(a place or object)* with a bomb or bombs:
EXAMPLE:
they bombed *the city* at dawn.
GRAMMAR: [with obj.]
(the asterisks match the direct object in the example with the bracketed item in
the definition)
CORE SENSE: Brit. informal move very quickly:
EXAMPLE:
we were bombing *down the motorway* at breakneck speed.
GRAMMAR: [no obj., with adverbial of direction]
(asterisks show adverbial in example)
CORE SENSE: informal (of a film, play, or other event) fail badly:
EXAMPLE:
it just became another big-budget film that bombed.
GRAMMAR: [no obj.]
This has particular relevance for a dictionary such as the Oxford Dictionary of
English, where the aim is to present information in such a way that it helps to
explain the structure of the language itself, not just the meanings of individual
senses. For this reason, special attention has been paid to the grammar of each
word, and grammatical structures are given explicitly.
Where possible, the syntactic behaviour of a word is presented directly: for
example, if a verb is normally found in a particular sense followed by a certain
preposition, this is indicated before the definition, in bold. For an example, see
build (build on).
In other cases, collocations which are typical of the word in use, though not
obligatory, are shown highlighted within the example sentence. For examples, see
cushy (a cushy number) and end (ended up in, end up with).
Great efforts have been made to use a minimum of specialist terminology.
Nevertheless, a small number of terms are essential in explaining the grammar of a
word. The less familiar terms are explained below. All terms are, of course, defined
and explained under their own entries in the dictionary.
Terms relating to nouns
Nouns and senses of nouns are generally categorized in this dictionary as being
either [mass noun] or [count noun]. A mass noun is one which is not ordinarily
found in the plural and is not used in the singular with the indefinite article ‘a’ (it is
normal to talk about ‘bacon’, for example, but not ‘a bacon’ or ‘three bacons’), while
a count noun is one which can be used with the indefinite article ‘a’ and can take a
plural (e.g. shirt, shirts).
For examples of mass nouns, see bacon, badminton and banking. By default all
nouns in this dictionary are to be regarded as count nouns unless stated otherwise.
The label [count noun] is used to mark those nouns and senses of nouns which
can take a plural where this is in contrast with an already stated mass noun. For
examples, compare the core sense and subsenses at ballet and brokerage.
However, there are particular groups of mass noun that can take a plural form in
certain circumstances, for instance when referring to different types of something
such as food (as in the panel tasted a range of cheeses). For reasons of space,
such uses are recorded in the Oxford Dictionary of English only when they are
particularly important. Some categories of mass noun that can take a plural
(although this may not be explicitly stated in the dictionary) are given below. The
Oxford Dictionary of English is the official dictionary of the television word game
Countdown, and the following list may be helpful for people who enjoy the
programme:
38
1 Types or varieties of:
• food and drink: e.g. yogurt/yogurts, pasta/pastas, rum/rums.
• plants: e.g. clover/clovers, barley/barleys.
• fabric: e.g. gingham/ginghams, silk/silks.
• certain languages or subjects: e.g. English/Englishes, music/musics.
• metals and alloys: e.g. steel/steels, solder/solders.
Other terms relating to nouns
[as modifier]: used to mark a noun which can be placed before another noun in
order to modify its meaning. For examples see boom and bedside.
[treated as sing.]: used to mark a noun which is plural in form but is used with a
singular verb, e.g. ‘mumps’ in mumps is one of the major childhood diseases or
‘genetics’ in genetics has played a major role in this work.
• other substances or materials: e.g. rind/rinds, soil/soils, sealskin/sealskins,
suncream/suncreams.
[treated as sing. or pl.]: used to mark a noun which can be used with either a
singular or a plural verb without any change in meaning or in the form of the
headword (often called collective nouns, because they typically denote groups of
people considered collectively), e.g. the government are committed to this policy or
the government is trying to gag its critics.
2 Portions or units of something, especially food and drink: e.g. lager (glasses/
bottles of lager = lagers), paella (portions of paella = paellas).
[in sing.]: used to mark a noun which is used as a count noun but is never or rarely
found in the plural, e.g. ear in an ear for rhythm and melody.
• rocks: e.g. granite/granites, lava/lavas, clay/clays.
• chemical compounds: e.g. fluoride/fluorides, hydride/hydrides.
3 Shades of colours: e.g. pink/pinks, scarlet/scarlets, grey/greys.
4 An instance of:
• an action or process: e.g. completion (an instance of completing a property
sale = completions), genocide (act of genocide = genocides), lambing (an act
of lambing = lambings).
• a surgical operation: e.g. circumcision/circumcisions.
• an emotion, pain, or feeling: e.g. backache/backaches, grief (an instance or
cause of grief = griefs).
5 An area of land of a specified type: e.g. bogland/boglands, terrain/terrains.
Terms relating to verbs
[with obj.]: used to mark a verb which takes a direct object, i.e. is transitive (the
type of direct object being shown in brackets in the definition). For example, see
belabour.
[no obj.]: used to mark a verb which takes no direct object, i.e. is intransitive. For
example, see bristle.
[with adverbial]: used to mark a verb which takes an obligatory adverbial, typically
a prepositional phrase, without which the sentence in which the verb occurs would
sound unnatural or odd, e.g. barge into under barge.
Terms relating to adjectives
[attrib.]: used to mark an adjective which is normally used attributively, i.e. comes
before the noun which it modifies, e.g. certain in a certain man (not the man is
certain, which means something very different). Note that attributive use is
standard for many adjectives, especially those in specialist or technical fields: the
[attrib.] label is not used in such cases.
[predic.]: used to mark an adjective which is normally used predicatively, i.e. comes
after the verb, e.g. ajar in the door was ajar (not the ajar door).
39
[postpositive]: used to mark an adjective which is used postpositively, i.e. it
typically comes immediately after the noun which it modifies. Such uses are
unusual in English and generally arise because the adjective has been adopted
from a language where postpositive use is standard, e.g. galore in there were
prizes galore for everything.
Terms relating to adverbs
[sentence adverb]: used to mark an adverb which stands outside a sentence or
clause, providing commentary on it as a whole or showing the speaker’s or writer’s
attitude to what is being said, rather than the manner in which something was done.
Sentence adverbs most frequently express the speaker's or writer's point of view,
although they may also be used to set a context by stating a field of reference, e.g.
certainly.
[as submodifier]: used to mark an adverb which is used to modify an adjective or
another adverb, e.g. comparatively.
Evidence and Illustrative Examples
The information presented in the dictionary about individual words is based on
close analysis of how words behave in real, natural language. Behind every
dictionary entry are examples of the word in use–often hundreds and thousands of
them–which have been analysed to give information about typical usage, about
distribution (whether typically British or typically US, for example), about register
(whether informal or derogatory, for example), about currency (whether archaic or
dated, for example), and about subject field (whether used only in Medicine,
Finance, Chemistry, or Sport, for example).
1. Oxford English Corpus
The Oxford Dictionary of English was compiled using the Oxford English Corpus,
and new material added to this second edition has been derived from this source.
The Oxford English Corpus is the name for the Oxford University Press holdings of
language databases amounting to hundreds of million words of written and spoken
English in machine-readable form, available for computational analysis. Among
these language resources are the British National Corpus (100 million words), a
new corpus of comparable size, and the database of the Oxford Reading
Programme (see below). By using concordancing techniques, each word can be
viewed almost instantaneously in the immediate contexts in which it is used.
Whereas compilers of previous dictionaries were able to base their work on only a
limited selection of citations, lexicographers on the Oxford Dictionary of English
analysed hundreds of real examples of each word to see how real language
behaves today.
Concordances show at a glance that some combinations of words (called
‘collocations’) occur together much more often than others. For example,
concordance entries might show that ‘end in’, ‘end the’, and ‘end up’ all occur quite
often. But are any of these combinations important enough to be given special
treatment in the dictionary?
Recent research has focused on identifying combinations that are not merely
frequent but also statistically significant. In the Oxford English Corpus, the two
words ‘end the’ occur very frequently together but they do not form a statistically
significant unit, since the word ‘the’ is the commonest in the language. The
combinations end up and end in, on the other hand, are shown to be more
significant and tell the lexicographer something about the way the verb end
behaves in normal use. Of course, a dictionary for general use cannot go into
detailed statistical analysis of word combinations, but it can present examples that
are typical of normal usage. In the Oxford Dictionary of English particularly
significant or important patterns are highlighted, in bold, e.g. end in, end up under
end.
For further details, see the section on Grammar.
2. Oxford Reading Programme
The citation database created by the Oxford Reading Programme is an ongoing
research project in which readers around the world select citations from a huge
variety of specialist and non-specialist sources in all varieties of English. This
database currently stands at around 77 million words and is growing at a rate of 7
million words a year.
40
3. Specialist reading
A general corpus does not, by definition, contain large quantities of specialized
terminology. For this reason, a directed reading programme was set up specially
for the Oxford Dictionary of English, enabling additional research and collection of
citations in a number of neglected fields, for example food and cooking, health and
fitness, boats and sailing, photography, genetics, martial arts, and complementary
medicine.
4. Examples
The Oxford Dictionary of English contains many more examples of words in use
than any other comparable dictionary. Generally, they are there to show typical uses
of the word or sense. All examples are authentic, in that they represent actual
usage. In the past, dictionaries have used made-up examples, partly because not
enough authentic text was available and partly through an assumption that invented
examples were somehow better in that they could be tailored to the precise needs
of the dictionary entry. Such a view finds little favour today, and it is now generally
recognized that the ‘naturalness’ provided by authentic examples is of the utmost
importance in providing an accurate picture of language in use.
Word Histories
The etymologies in standard dictionaries explain the language from which a word
was brought into English, the period at which it is first recorded in English, and the
development of modern word forms. While the Oxford Dictionary of English does
this, it also goes further. It explains sense development as well as morphological (or
form) development. Information is presented clearly and with a minimum of
technical terminology, and the perspective taken is that of the general user who
would like to know about word origins but who is not a philological specialist. In this
context, the history of how and why a particular meaning developed from an
apparently quite different older meaning is likely to be at least as interesting as, for
example, what the original form was in Latin or Greek.
For example, the word history for the word oaf shows how the present meaning
developed from the meaning ‘elf’, while the entry for conker shows how the word
may be related both to ‘conch’ and ‘conquer’ (explaining how the original game of
conkers was played with snail shells rather than the nut of the horse chestnut).
Additional special features of the Oxford Dictionary of English include ‘internal
etymologies’ and ‘folk etymologies’. Internal etymologies are given within entries to
explain the origin of particular senses, phrases, or idioms. For example, how did the
figurative use of red herring come about? Why do we call something a flash in the
pan? See the internal etymologies under red herring and flash.
The Oxford Dictionary of English presents the information in a straightforward,
user-friendly fashion immediately following the relevant definition.
In a similar vein, folk etymologies–those explanations which are unfounded but
nevertheless well known to many people–have traditionally simply been ignored in
dictionaries. The Oxford Dictionary of English gives an account of widely held but
often erroneous folk etymologies for the benefit of the general user, explaining
competing theories and assessing their relative merits where applicable. See the
folk etymologies at posh and snob.
41
Researching word histories is similar in some respects to archaeology: the
evidence is often partial or not there at all, and etymologists must make informed
decisions using the evidence available, however inadequate it may be. From time to
time new evidence becomes available, and the known history of a word may need
to be reconsidered. In this, the Oxford Dictionary of English has been able to draw
on the extensive expertise and ongoing research of the Oxford English Dictionary.
Usage Notes (&)
Interest in questions of good usage is widespread among English speakers
everywhere, and many issues are hotly debated. In the Oxford Dictionary of
English, traditional issues have been reappraised, and guidance is given on various
points, old and new. The aim is to help people to use the language more accurately,
more clearly, and more elegantly, and to give information and offer reassurance in
the face of some of the more baffling assertions about ‘correctness’ that are
sometimes made.
This reappraisal has involved looking carefully at evidence of actual usage (in the
Oxford English Corpus, the citations collected by the Oxford Reading Programme,
and other sources) in order to find out where mistakes are actually being made,
and where confusion and ambiguity actually arise. The issues on which journalists
and others tend to comment have been reassessed and a judgement made about
whether their comments are justified.
From the 15th century onwards, traditionalists have been objecting to particular
senses of certain English words and phrases, for example ‘aggravate’, ‘due to’, and
‘hopefully’. Certain grammatical structures, too, have been singled out for adverse
comment, notably the split infinitive and the use of a preposition at the end of a
clause. Some of these objections are founded on very dubious arguments, for
example the notion that English grammatical structures should precisely parallel
those of Latin or that meaning change of any kind is inherently suspect. For
examples of notes on such issues, see preposition, due and aggravate.
The usage notes in the Oxford Dictionary of English take the view that English is
English, not Latin, and that English is, like all languages, subject to change. Good
usage is usage that gets the writer's message across, not usage that conforms to
some arbitrary rules that fly in the face of historical fact or current evidence. The
editors of the Oxford Dictionary of English are well aware that the prescriptions of
pundits in the past have had remarkably little practical effect on the way the
language is actually used. A good dictionary reports the language as it is, not as
the editors (or anyone else) would wish it to be, and the usage notes must give
guidance that accords with observed facts about present-day usage.
This is not to imply that the issues are straightforward or that there are simple
solutions, however. Much of the debate about use of language is highly political and
controversy is, occasionally, inevitable. Changing social attitudes have stigmatized
long-established uses such as the word ‘man’ to denote the human race in general,
for example, and have highlighted the absence of a gender-neutral singular
pronoun meaning both ‘he’ and ‘she’ (for which purpose ‘they’ is increasingly being
used). Similarly, words such as ‘race’ and ‘native’ are now associated with particular
problems of sensitivity in use, and the ways that disability is referred to have come
under close examination. The usage notes in the Oxford Dictionary of English offer
information and practical advice on such issues. For examples, see man, native
and disabled.
Standard English
Unless otherwise stated, the words and senses recorded in this dictionary are all
part of standard English; that is, they are in normal use in both speech and writing
everywhere in the world, at many different levels of formality, ranging from official
documents to casual conversation. Some words, however, are appropriate only in
particular contexts, and these are labelled accordingly. The technical term for a
particular level of use in language is register.
The Oxford Dictionary of English uses the following register labels:
formal:
normally used only in writing, in contexts such as official documents.
informal:
normally used only in contexts such as conversations or letters
among friends.
dated:
no longer used by the majority of English speakers, but still
encountered occasionally, especially among the older generation.
archaic:
very old-fashioned language, not in ordinary use at all today, but
sometimes used to give a deliberately old-fashioned effect or found
in works of the past that are still widely read.
historical:
still used today, but only to refer to some practice or artefact that is
no longer part of the modern world, e.g. baldric and almoner.
literary:
found only or mainly in literature written in an ‘elevated' style.
42
technical:
normally used only in technical and specialist language, though not
necessarily restricted to any specific subject field.
rare:
not in normal use.
humorous:
used with the intention of sounding funny or playful.
dialect:
not used in the standard language, but still widely used in certain
local regions of the English-speaking world. A distinction is made
between traditional dialect, which is generally to do with rural society
and agricultural practices which have mostly died out, and
contemporary dialect, where speakers may not even be aware that
the term is in fact a regionalism. The Oxford Dictionary of English
aims to include the main contemporary dialect terms, but does not
set out to record traditional dialect.
offensive:
language that is likely to cause offence, particularly racial offence,
whether the speaker intends it or not.
derogatory: language intended to convey a low opinion or cause personal
offence.
euphemistic: mild or indirect language used to avoid making direct reference to
something unpleasant or taboo.
vulgar slang: informal language that may cause offence, often because it refers to
the bodily functions of sexual activity or excretion, which are still
widely regarded as taboo.
World English
English is spoken as a first language by more than 300 million people throughout
the world, and used as a second language by many millions more. It is the
language of international communication in trade, diplomacy, sport, science,
technology, and countless other fields.
The main regional standards are British, US and Canadian, Australian and New
Zealand, South African, Indian, West Indian, and SE Asian. Within each of these
regional varieties, a number of highly differentiated local dialects may be found. For
example, within British English, Scottish and Irish English have a long history and a
number of distinctive features, which have in turn influenced particular North
American and other varieties.
43
The scope of a dictionary such as the Oxford Dictionary of English, given the
breadth of material it aims to cover, must be limited in the main to the vocabulary of
the standard language throughout the world rather than local dialectal variation.
Nevertheless, the Oxford Dictionary of English includes thousands of regionalisms
encountered in standard contexts in the different English-speaking areas of the
world. For examples, see bakkie, larrikin, ale, history-sheeter, sufferation.
The underlying approach has been to get away from the traditional, parochial
notion that ‘correct’ English is spoken only in England and more particularly only in
Oxford or London. A network of consultants in all parts of the English-speaking
world has assisted in this by giving information and answering queries–by e-mail,
on a regular, often daily basis–on all aspects of the language in a particular region.
Often, the aim has been to find out whether a particular word, sense, or expression,
well known and standard in British English, is used anywhere else. The picture that
emerges is one of complex interactions among an overlapping set of regional
standards.
The vast majority of words and senses in the Oxford Dictionary of English are
common to all the major regional standard varieties of English, but where important
local differences exist, the Oxford Dictionary of English records them. There are
more than 14,000 geographical labels on words and senses in this dictionary, but
this contrasts with more than ten times that number which are not labelled at all.
The complexity of the overall picture has necessarily been simplified, principally for
reasons of space and clarity of presentation. For example, a label such as ‘chiefly
Brit.’ implies but does not state that a term is not standard in American English,
though it may nevertheless be found in some local varieties in the US. In addition,
the label ‘US’ implies that the use is typically US (and probably originated in the
US) and is not standard in British English, but it might be found in other varieties
such as Australian or South African English. The label ‘Brit.’, on the other hand,
implies that the use is found typically in standard British English but is not found in
standard American English, though it may be found elsewhere.
Spelling
It is often said that English spelling is both irregular and illogical, and it is certainly
true that it is only indirectly related to contemporary pronunciation. English spelling
reflects not modern pronunciation but the pronunciation of the 14th century, as
used by Chaucer. This traditional spelling was reinforced in the 16th and 17th
centuries, in particular through the influence of the works of Shakespeare and the
Authorized Version of the Bible. However, in the two centuries between Chaucer
and Shakespeare English pronunciation had undergone huge changes, but spelling
had failed to follow.
In the 18th century, standard spelling became almost completely fixed. The
dictionaries written in this period, particularly Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of the
English Language (1755), helped establish this national standard, which, with only
minor change and variation, is the standard accepted in English today. The complex
history of the English language, together with the absence of any ruling body
imposing ‘spelling reform’, has ensured that many idiosyncrasies and anomalies in
standard spelling have not only arisen but have also been preserved.
The Oxford Dictionary of English gives advice and information on spelling,
particularly those cases which are irregular or which otherwise cause difficulty for
native speakers. The main categories are summarized below.
Variant spellings
The main form of each word given in the Oxford Dictionary of English is always the
standard British spelling. If there is a standard variant, e.g. a standard US spelling
variant, this is indicated at the top of the entry and is cross-referred if its alphabetical position is more than three entries distant from the main entry. For examples,
compare filo/phyllo and aluminium/aluminum.
Other variants, such as archaic, old-fashioned, or informal spellings, are crossreferred to the main entry, but are not themselves listed at the parent entry. For
example, compare Esquimau/Eskimo.
-ise or ize?
Many verbs end with the suffix –ize or ise. The form –ize has been in use in
English since the 16th century, and, despite what some people think, is not an
Americanism. The alternative form –ise is found more commonly in British than in
American English. For most verbs of this class either –ize or –ise is acceptable; this
dictionary has used –ize spellings, with –ise given as an equally correct, alternative
spelling. For some words, however, -ise is obligatory: first, where it forms part of a
larger word element, such as –mise (= sending) in compromise, and –prise (=
taking) in surprise; and second, in verbs corresponding to nouns with –s- in the
stem, such as advertise and televise.
Hyphenation
Although standard spelling in English is fixed, the use of hyphenation is not. In
standard English a few general rules are followed, and these are outlined below.
Hyphenation of noun compounds: There is no hard-and-fast rule saying whether,
for example, airstream, air stream, or air-stream is correct. All forms are found in
use: all are recorded in the Oxford English Corpus and other standard texts.
However, there is a broad tendency to avoid hyphenation for noun compounds in
modern English (except when used to show grammatical function: see below). Thus
there is, for example, a preference for airstream rather than air-stream and for air
raid rather than air-raid. Although this is a tendency in both British and US English
there is an additional preference in US English for the form to be one word and in
British English for the form to be two words, e.g. buck tooth tends to be the
commonest form in British English, while bucktooth tends to be the commonest
form in US English. To save space and avoid confusion, only one of the three
potential forms of each noun compound (the standard British one) is used as the
headword form in the Oxford Dictionary of English. This does not, however, imply
that other forms are incorrect or not used.
Grammatical function: Hyphens are also used to perform certain grammatical
functions. When a noun compound made up of two separate words (e.g. credit
card) is placed before another noun and used to modify it, the general rule is that
the noun compound becomes hyphenated, e.g. I used my credit card but credit-card
debt. This sort of regular alternation is seen in example sentences in the Oxford
Dictionary of English but is not otherwise explicitly mentioned in the dictionary
entries.
44
A similar alternation is found in compound adjectives such as well intentioned.
When used predicatively (i.e. after the verb), such adjectives are unhyphenated, but
when used attributively (i.e. before the noun), they are hyphenated: his remarks
were well intentioned but a well-intentioned remark.
A general rule governing verb compounds means that, where a noun compound is
two words (e.g. beta test), any verb derived from it is normally hyphenated (to
beta-test: the system was beta-tested). Similarly, verbal nouns and adjectives are
more often hyphenated than ordinary noun or adjective compounds (e.g. glassmaking, nation-building).
Phrasal verbs such as ‘take off’, ‘take over’, and ‘set up’ are not hyphenated, but
nouns formed from phrasal verbs are hyphenated, or, increasingly, written as one
word: the plane accelerated for take-off; a hostile takeover; he didn’t die, it was a
set-up. There is an increasing tendency to hyphenate the verb form as well (food
available to take-away) but this is not good writing style and should be avoided.
Inflection
Compared with other European languages, English has comparatively few
inflections, and those that exist are remarkably regular. We add an -s to most nouns
to make a plural; we add -ed to most verbs to make a past tense or a past
participle, and -ing to make a present participle.
Occasionally, a difficulty arises: for example, a single consonant after a short
stressed vowel is doubled before adding -ed or -ing (hum, hums, humming,
hummed). In addition, words borrowed from other languages generally bring their
foreign inflections with them, causing problems for English speakers who are not
proficient in those languages.
In all such cases, guidance is given in the Oxford Dictionary of English. The main
areas covered are outlined below.
Verbs
The following forms are regarded as regular and are therefore not shown in the
dictionary:
• third person singular present forms adding -s to the stem (or -es to stems ending
in -s, -x, -z, -sh, or soft -ch), e.g. find → finds or change → changes
• past tenses and past participles dropping a final silent e and adding -ed to the
stem, e.g. change → changed or dance → danced
• present participles dropping a final silent e and adding -ing to the stem, e.g.
change → changing or dance → dancing
Other forms are given in the dictionary, notably for:
• verbs which inflect by doubling a consonant, e.g. bat → batting, batted
• verbs ending in -y which inflect by changing -y to -i, e.g. try → tries, tried
• verbs in which past tense and past participle do not follow the regular -ed
pattern, e.g. feel → past and past participle felt; awake → past awoke; past
participle awoken
• present participles which add -ing but retain a final e (in order to make clear that
the pronunciation of g remains soft), e.g. singe → singeing
Nouns
Plurals formed by adding -s (or -es when they end in -s, -x, -z, -sh, or soft -ch) are
regarded as regular and are not shown.
Other plural forms are given in the dictionary, notably for:
• nouns ending in -i or -o, e.g. agouti → agoutis; albino → albinos
• nouns ending in -a, -um, or -us which are or appear to be Latinate forms, e.g.
alumna → alumnae; spectrum → spectra; alveolus → alveoli
• nouns ending in -y, e.g. fly → flies
• nouns with more than one plural form, e.g. storey → storeys or stories
• nouns with plurals showing a change in the stem, e.g. foot → feet
• nouns with plurals unchanged from the singular form, e.g. sheep → sheep
45
Adjectives
The following forms for comparative and superlative are regarded as regular and
are not shown in the dictionary:
• words of one syllable adding -er and -est, e.g. great → greater, greatest
• words of one syllable ending in silent e, which drop the -e and add -er and -est,
e.g. brave → braver, bravest
• words which form the comparative and superlative by adding ‘more’ and ‘most’
Other forms are given in the dictionary, notably for:
• adjectives which form the comparative and superlative by doubling a final
consonant, e.g. hot → hotter, hottest
• two-syllable adjectives which form the comparative and superlative with -er and
-est (typically adjectives ending in -y and their negative forms), e.g. happy →
happier, happiest; unhappy → unhappier, unhappiest
Pronunciations
Generally speaking, native speakers of English do not need information about the
pronunciation for ordinary, everyday words such as bake, baby, beach, bewilder,
boastful, or budget. For this reason, no pronunciations are given for such words
(or their compounds and derivatives) in the Oxford Dictionary of English. Words
such as baba ganoush, baccalaureate, beatific, bijouterie, bucolic, and
buddleia, on the other hand, are less familiar and may give problems. Similarly,
difficulties are often encountered in pronouncing names of people and places,
especially foreign ones, such as Chechnya, Kieslowski, and Althusser.
In the Oxford Dictionary of English, the principle followed is that pronunciations are
given where they are likely to cause problems for the native speaker of English, in
particular for foreign words, foreign names, scientific and other specialist terms,
rare words, words with unusual stress patterns, and words where there are
alternative pronunciations or where there is a dispute about the standard
pronunciation.
The Oxford Dictionary of English uses the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) to
represent the standard accent of English as spoken in the south of England
(sometimes called Received Pronunciation or RP). The transcriptions reflect
pronunciation as it actually is in modern English, unlike some longer-established
systems, which reflect the standard pronunciation of broadcasters and public
schools in the 1930s. It is recognized that, although the English of southern
England is the pronunciation given, many variations are heard in standard speech
in other parts of the English-speaking world.
The symbols used for English words, with their values, are given below. In multisyllable words the symbol ' is used to show that the following syllable is stressed
(as in k@"bal); the symbol % indicates a secondary stress (as in %kal@"bri;s).
Consonants: b, d, f, h, k, l, m, n, p, r, s, t, v, w, and z have their usual English
values. Other symbols are used as follows:
g
get
x
loch
D
this
Í
chip
N
ring
S
she
Ù
jar
T
thin
Z
decision
j
yes
Vowels
short vowels
long vowels
diphthongs
(; indicates length)
triphthongs
VI@ fire
a
cat
A; arm
E
bed
E;
hair
aU how
@
ago
@;
her
eI
I
sit
i;
see
@U no
i
cosy
O;
saw
I@
near
Q
hot
u; too
OI
boy
V
run
U
put
VI
my
aU@ sour
day
U@ poor
46
(@) before /l/, /m/, or /n/ indicates that the syllable may be realized with a syllabic l,
m, or n, rather than with a vowel and consonant, e.g. /"bVt(@)n/ rather than /"bVt@n/.
G
(Spanish)
Burgos
F
(Italian)
Cagliari
(r) indicates an r that is sometimes sounded when a vowel follows, as in drawer,
cha-chaing.
Û
(Hungarian)
Magyarország
R
French ‘r’
Anvers, Arles
r
all other values of ‘r’ in
other featured languages.
(German) Braunschweig
(Italian) Alberti
(Russian) Grozny
(Spanish) Algeciras, zarzuela
Foreign pronunciations
Foreign words and phrases, whether naturalized or not, are always given an
anglicized pronunciation. The anglicized pronunciation represents the normal
pronunciation used by native speakers of standard English (who may not be
speakers of other languages) when using the word in an English context. A foreign
pronunciation is also given for words taken from other languages (principally
French, Dutch, German, Italian, Russian, and Spanish) where this is appreciably
different from the anglicized form and where the other language is familiar to a
reasonable number of English speakers.
Where the native form of a foreign place name is given in addition to the anglicized
form, only the foreign pronunciation of this form is given.
Foreign-language transcriptions are based on current national standards. Regional
variations have not been given, except in the case of Spanish transcriptions, where
both Castilian and American Spanish variants are given (if distinct). Transcriptions
are broad, and many symbols, identical to those used for transcribing English, have
similar values to those of RP. In a few cases, where there is no English equivalent
to a foreign sound, a symbol has been added to the inventory. The additional
symbols used to represent foreign pronunciations are given on the right.
Vowels
Short vowels
long vowels
(; indicates length)
6
(German)
Abitur
A
(Dutch)
Nederland
e
(French)
(Italian)
(Spanish)
o
a;
(Dutch)
(German)
Den Haag
Aachen
abbé
Croce
Albacete
e;
(German)
(Dutch)
(Irish)
Wehrmacht
Nederland
Gaeltacht
(French)
(Italian)
(Spanish)
auberge
Palio
Cortes
o;
(German) verboten
(Hungarian) Brassó
O
(French)
(German)
(Greek)
(Hungarian)
(Italian)
Bonnard
durchkomponiert
Dhílos
Brassó
Borgia
{;
(German)
Consonants
C
(German)
Ehrlich, gemütlich
9
(French)
Pasteur
J
(French)
(Italian)
(Portuguese)
(Spanish)
Monseigneur, Auvergne, Daubigny
Emilia-Romagna
Minho
España, Buñuel
{
(French)
Montreux
u
(Spanish)
Bilbao
(French)
(Italian)
(Spanish)
Anjou
Duccio
Asunción
B
47
Gasthöfe
y
(French)
cru
Y
(German)
München
j
(Irish)
(Russian)
Dáil
Arkhangelsk
>
(French)
Horta
nasalized vowels
(~ indicates nasality)
a~
pincette
Q~
cordon bleu
}
A~
(French)
Danton, Lac Leman
E~
(French)
Amiens, Rodin
~
9
(French)
Verdun
O~
(French)
arrondissement
y;
(German)
gemütlich
Oxford Thesaurus of English
Introduction
diphthongs
aI
used for anglicized
French pronunciations
(German)
Gleichschaltung
The Oxford Thesaurus of English (OTE) has been compiled using new evidence in
new ways, in order to create an original work of reference that will be most useful to
a wide range of users for many different purposes. It is an independent resource in
its own right, but it may also be viewed as a companion volume to the Oxford
Dictionary of English, Oxford’s ground-breaking one-volume dictionary which,
based on systematic analysis of hundreds of millions of words of real English,
presents the most accurate picture of the language available. OTE draws on the
same data to give sets of words compiled according to their similarity in meaning
and checked for actual usage against the evidence in the Oxford English Corpus.
All thesauruses contain lists of words that are linked by having a similar or related
meaning, but this thesaurus also contains:
■
opposites (e.g. for the different senses of smart: scruffy, unfashionable, stupid,
slow, and gentle).
■
word links (e.g. words related to horse, such as stallion, mare, and equine)
■
studies of synonyms with similar meanings, entitled ‘Choose the Right Word’
(e.g. brusque, abrupt, curt, and terse)
■
advice on pairs of confusingly similar words (e.g. “militate or mitigate?”)
■
a broad selection of word lists (e.g. herbs: angelica, anise, basil, bay leaf,
bergamot, etc.)
For more information on these features, see the relevant sections on pages 51–52.
Selection of entries
The primary purpose of OTE is to give synonyms for the common everyday words
of English: words with roughly the same meaning as the entry word (headword).
Some words, especially those for animals, plants, and physical objects, do not have
synonyms, so they do not get entries in a thesaurus. You will not find synonyms of
gerbil or geranium, but there is an entry for squirrel because of the phrasal verb
squirrel something away, which has synonyms such as save, put aside, and stash
away.
48
The words selected as headwords are general words that nonspecialists are likely
to want to look up. It is the job of a dictionary, not a thesaurus, to explain the
meanings of unusual words, such as supererogatory, so such words do not get an
alphabetical entry here. However, supererogatory is given as a synonym at entries
for the more familiar words inessential, needless, and unnecessary. A thesaurus
can thus lead the user from the familiar to the unfamiliar, improving his or her word
power.
Homonyms
Homonyms are words that are written the same but have different and unrelated
meanings, such as the bank of a river or lake and a bank that looks after people’s
money. Each has its own numbered entry, thus:
bank1 …
the banks of Lake Michigan
bank2 …
I paid the money into my bank
Synonyms
It is sometimes argued that no two words have exactly the same meaning. Even
words as similar in meaning as close and shut may have slightly different nuances.
Closing a shop implies that the shop is no longer open for business, so no one can
come in. On the other hand, shutting a shop implies that the shop is being made
secure, so that nothing can be taken out. A similar distinction is found between
strong and powerful: powerful enemies may threaten from outside, but a strong
defence on the inside will deter them from attacking. However, these are unusually
subtle distinctions. For most practical purposes, close and shut have the same
meaning, as do strong and powerful. Other synonyms are more distant, or
emphasize different aspects of the meaning. For example, another close synonym
of strong is muscular, but it places much more emphasis on physical strength. By
contrast, stalwart and staunch are synonyms that emphasize more abstract aspects
of this meaning of strong. Forceful, secure, durable, loud, intense, bright, and
alcoholic are other close synonyms of strong, but all in quite different senses. They
are not, of course, synonyms of each other.
In this title, the broadest possible definition of the term ‘synonym’ has been
adopted, as being the one that will be most useful to users. Even words whose
49
meaning is quite distantly related to that of the headword are supplied if they can
be used to get the same message across in appropriate contexts or if they are
synonymous with a part of the meaning of the headword.
The synonyms in each entry are grouped together in synonym sets. Major synonym
sets correspond roughly to different senses of a word in a dictionary, but the
divisions are also governed by the matches between headwords and synonyms.
Each major synonym set is numbered, and many have finer subdivisions, which are
separated by semicolons.
At the start of almost every synonym set is a ‘core synonym’: the term which is
closest in meaning to the headword in that particular sense. Core synonyms are
printed in BOLD. If no one synonym is particularly close, there may be no bold core
synonym. Some synonym sets have more than one core synonym; for example at
avant-garde (adjective), both innovative and advanced are very close in meaning to
the headword, so both are given as core synonyms. Two different core synonyms
within the same sense group may emphasize slightly different aspects of the
meaning of the headword. For example, at dutiful, the first core synonym given is
conscientious, followed by a group of words closely related to this aspect of its
meaning. Then, after a semicolon, a second core synonym, obedient, is given, with
a further group of synonyms related to that aspect.
Synonyms whose usage is restricted in some way, such as regional expressions
and informal or very formal words, are placed at the end of each major synonym
set and labelled accordingly. See Register below.
Illustrative examples
Almost every synonym set in OTE is illustrated with a carefully chosen example of
the word in use in the relevant sense. These are authentic examples of natural
usage taken from the Oxford English Corpus (see Linguistic evidence below). The
examples can therefore be trusted for guidance on using unfamiliar words in an
idiomatic way, but it does not follow that each synonym given can be used in the
example, in place of the headword.
Where part of an example is printed in bold type, this indicates that some or all of
the synonyms can be substituted for that particular phrase, not just for the
headword alone. Thus at attached, the example given is:
she was very attached to her brother
because the synonyms are equivalent to attached to:
fond of, devoted to, full of regard for, full of admiration for; affectionate
towards, tender towards, caring towards; <informal> mad about, crazy
about, nuts about.
Linguistic evidence
OTE was compiled using the Oxford English Corpus, the collective name for
Oxford’s holdings of language databases amounting currently to over 300 million
words of written and spoken English, which are in machine-readable form and
available for computational and lexicographical analysis. The text is drawn from a
very diverse range of sources (from scholarly journals to internet chatrooms, via
novels and newspapers), either as large portions of continuous text or as short
extracts selected for the ever-growing database of the Oxford Reading Programme
by its international network of readers.
a verb, the idiomatic expressions are entered as subentries under the part of
speech in which the word is used. Thus, by the book is given under the noun
senses of book, while book in is given under the verb senses.
Register: standard vs. informal and regional English
Informal usage is more prevalent than it was even just a few years ago. People may
be heard using slang expressions in quite formal contexts, while the use of swear
words and taboo words is on the increase. Taboos generally are weakening, though
more so in Australia, where bastard is scarcely different from guy or chap, and less
so in southern US States such as Texas. This thesaurus contains a rich selection of
informal and vulgar synonyms for more formal expressions. Users who wish to
avoid giving offence should treat the vulgar slang labels as warning notices.
■
confirm whether a word has senses for which there are suitable synonyms
Most of the synonyms given are, of course, part of standard English; that is, they
are in normal use in both speech and writing everywhere in the world, at many
different levels of formality, ranging from official documents to casual conversation.
These general synonyms are given first in each synonym set. Some words,
however, are appropriate only in particular contexts, and these are placed after the
standard expressions and labelled accordingly. The technical term for these
differences in levels of usage is ‘register’. The main register labels used in this
thesaurus are the following:
■
check the sense of words being selected as synonyms
informal:
■
actively find synonyms which have not previously been recorded.
The Oxford English Corpus allows lexicographers to sort and analyse thousands of
examples in context and thereby see more clearly than ever before how words are
actually used. For the specific purposes of this thesaurus they have been able to:
normally used only in contexts such as conversations or letters
between friends, e.g. swig as a synonym for drink.
The Corpus is also used to obtain the sentences and phrases given as examples of
usage.
vulgar slang: informal language that may cause offence, usually because it refers
to bodily functions.
Idiomatic phrases and phrasal verbs
formal:
normally used only in writing, in contexts such as official documents, e.g. dwelling as a synonym for home.
technical:
normally used only in technical and specialist language, though not
necessarily restricted to any specific field, e.g. littoral as a synonym
for beach. Words used in specific fields are given appropriate labels,
e.g. Medicine, Christianity.
literary:
found only or mainly in literature written in an ‘elevated’ style, e.g.
ambrosial as a synonym for delicious.
English is full of idiomatic expressions—phrases whose meaning is more than the
sum of their parts. For example, a shot in the dark means ‘a guess’, while a shot in
the arm means ‘a boost’. Neither of these has very much to do with more literal
meanings of shot. Phrasal verbs are expressions such as book in and turn out,
consisting of a verb plus a particle. The meaning of a phrasal verb is also often
quite idiomatic; for example, the meanings of take off are quite distinct from the
meanings of take. This thesaurus includes a rich selection of both kinds of idiomatic
expression, and provides synonyms for each. If a word is used as both a noun and
50
dated:
no longer used by the majority of English speakers, but still
encountered occasionally, especially among the older generation,
e.g. measure one’s length as a synonym for fall down.
historical:
still used today, but only to refer to some practice or article that is no
longer part of the modern world, e.g. ruff, the type of collar.
humorous:
used with the intention of sounding funny or playful, e.g. terminological inexactitude as a synonym for lie.
archaic:
very old-fashioned language, not in ordinary use at all today, but
sometimes used to give a deliberately old-fashioned effect, or found
in works of the past that are still widely read, e.g. aliment as a
synonym for food.
rare:
not in common use, e.g. acclivitous as a synonym for steep.
World English
It is a truism that English is now a world language. In this thesaurus, particular care
has been taken to include synonyms from every variety of English, not just British;
and when these are exclusively or very strongly associated with a region of the
world they are labelled as such.
The main regional standards are British (abbreviated to <Brit.>), North American <N.
Amer.>, Australian and New Zealand <Austral./NZ>, South African <S. African>,
Indian (in the sense of the variety of English found throughout the subcontinent),
and West Indian <W. Indian>. If the distinction is very clear, finer labelling may be
used, as with beer parlour, a Canadian synonym for bar.
writers may find it equally useful to be given equivalent British terms, manky and
grotty.
Words that are used in English but still generally regarded is foreign are labelled
with their language of origin. For example, among the synonyms for hotel are:
French pension, auberge; Spanish posada, parador; Portuguese pousada; Italian
pensione; German Gasthaus.
Opposites
Many synonym sets are followed by one or more words that have the opposite
meaning from the headword, often called ‘antonyms’. There are several different
kinds of opposite. True and false are absolute opposites, with no middle ground.
Logically, a statement is either true or false: it cannot be slightly true or rather false.
Hot and cold, on the other hand, are opposites with gradations of meaning: it
makes perfectly good sense to say that something is rather hot or very cold, and
there are a number of words (warm, tepid, cool) which represent intermediate
stages. It makes sense to ask about something “How hot is it?” but that commits the
speaker to the notion that it is hot at least to some extent. So hot and cold are at
opposite ends of a continuum, rather than being absolutes.
For many words, such as senile, there is no single word that serves as an opposite,
but the phrase in the prime of life does the job. In this title the broadest possible
definition has been adopted, giving the maximum amount of information to the user.
In some cases, a phrasal opposite is given for a phrasal subentry, e.g. bottle things
up as an opposite for let off steam.
Scottish, Irish, and Northern English are varieties within the British Isles containing
distinctive vocabulary items of their own. The main synonyms found as regional
terms of this kind are entered and labelled accordingly.
The antonyms given in this thesaurus are not the only possible opposites, but they
are usually the furthest in meaning from the headword. By looking up the ‘opposite’
word as an entry in its own right, the user will generally find a much larger range of
opposites to choose from. For example, the entry for delete includes:
The term for something found mainly or exclusively in a particular country or region
(although it may be mentioned in any variety of English) is identified by an
indication such as ‘(in the Caribbean)’. An example is key (as a synonym for island).
Both add and insert are entries in their own right and give synonyms such as
include, append, and interpolate.
Many regionally restricted terms are informal, rather than being part of the standard
language. Writers in the northern hemisphere in search of local colour may be
delighted to learn that an Australian synonym for sordid is scungy, while Australian
51
-OPPOSITE(S) add, insert.
Word links
The ‘Word Links’ sections at the end of certain entries supply words which are not
actual synonyms but which have a different kind of relation to the headword. For
example, at milk, the adjective relating to milk is given (lactic); at town, the related
adjectives urban, municipal, and the rarer oppidan. Examples of other types of
relation include collective nouns (e.g. school at dolphin, or cast at hawk) and words
for the male, female, or young of an animal (e.g. leveret at hare, or tom, queen, and
kitten at cat), phobias (e.g. arachnophobia at spider), the study of a particular
subject (e.g. bryology at moss), or a geometric figure with a given number of sides
(e.g. pentagon at five).
for sport—game, recreation, etc.—the list entitled ‘Sports’ gives the names of
particular sports—archery, badminton, curling, dressage, etc. These lists make this
thesaurus an invaluable aid to crossword-solving and a fascinating source of
encyclopedic information on subjects as diverse as clouds, cocktails, marsupials,
and martial arts. There are cross-references ( ) to these lists from appropriate
words in the main text.
Some ‘word links’ are prefixes or suffixes related to the headword, such as photo- at
light, cerebro- at brain, and -metry at measurement; knowledge of prefixes and
suffixes helps the user to understand many new or unfamiliar words, such as
photometry and cerebrospinal.
‘Choose the Right Word’ notes
No two synonyms are exactly the same: they may have subtly different meanings or
be used in different contexts. For instance, the words blunt, candid, forthright, frank,
and outspoken are all synonyms of each other because they all have roughly the
same meaning, but there are subtle differences. There are 120 ‘Choose the Right
Word’ notes devoted to explaining the differences in meaning between groups of
close synonyms totalling well over 400. The distinctions are based on careful
analysis of actual usage as recorded in the Oxford English Corpus (see Linguistic
Evidence above). This analysis involved the most up-to-date computational
techniques to sift large amounts of data, as well as traditional lexicographical
analysis.
Confusables
There are, in addition, 45 notes explaining the difference between pairs of words
such as militate and mitigate, flaunt and flout, or principal and principle, that may
cause difficulty because they are written or pronounced similarly but have different
meanings.
Word lists
The updated word list feature in OTE comprises over 400 lists designed to
supplement the main entries. While the main entry for, say, sport gives synonyms
52
Oxford Dictionary of Quotations
Introduction (abridged)
In this new sixth edition of the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, the comprehensive
nature of its coverage has been extended and sustained. Since the fifth edition
appeared in 1999, the Dictionary, first published in 1941, has celebrated its
diamond jubilee. Earlier editions provided the foundations of the current edition, and
these foundations are constantly added to with new material from the reading
programme with which we monitor the language. Such new material includes not
only high-profile utterances of the last few years (from ‘axis of evil’ to ‘shock and
awe’), but also, and excitingly, quotations from an earlier time which have acquired
new resonance and currency.
A notable example of this occurred in the aftermath of ‘9/11’, the terrorist attacks of
11 September, 2001, which destroyed the World Trade Center. In the debate on a
possible invasion of Afghanistan, those opposed to intervention cited the words of
John Quincy Adams, sixth President of the United States, who in 1821 gave it as
his view that America ‘goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy’. A later
President was also to be directly quoted. At an address in Washington National
Cathedral, on 14 September 2001, George W. Bush stated that ‘Today we feel what
Franklin Roosevelt called the warm courage of national unity’, reaching back to
Roosevelt’s first inaugural address of 4 March 1933.
At the end of the 20th century, events in the Balkans recalled Kipling’s 19th-century
war correspondent in The Light that Failed, who ‘always opened his conversation
with the news that there would be trouble in the Balkans in the spring.’ What
happened during the crumbling of the former Yugoslavia reminded us of the
dreadful nature of civil war, but one aspect of its cruelty was highlighted over three
centuries ago, when the Parliamentary General William Waller wrote to his Royalist
counterpart (and old comrade) Ralph Hopton, ‘With what a perfect hatred I detest
this war without an enemy.’ A few years later, another soldier of the time summed up
the possible dangers of military victory. The Royalist Sir Jacob Astley, captured after
a battle in 1646, said prophetically to his captors, ‘Gentlemen, ye may now sit and
play, for you have done all your work, if you fall not out among yourselves.’
It is fascinating to see similar ideas echoing across the centuries. ‘The chief merit of
53
language is clearness, and we know that nothing detracts so much from this as do
unfamiliar terms,’ said Galen, the Greek physician of the 2nd century AD. In 1665,
John Bunyan (alluding to the Authorized Version of the Bible) wrote that ‘Words
easy to be understood do often hit the mark; when high and learned ones do only
pierce the air.’ Anxieties about heavy taxes might be thought of as a more recent
concern, but it was the Roman Emperor Tiberius who pointed out to his provincial
governors that ‘It is the part of the good shepherd to shear his flock, not skin it.’
(Tiberius would presumably have agreed with the words attributed to Jean-Baptiste
Colbert, chief minister to Louis XIV of France, ‘The art of taxation consists in so
plucking the goose as to obtain the largest possible amount of feathers with the
smallest possible amount of hissing.’) The Machiavellian French cleric and
statesman of the 17th century, the Cardinal de Retz, held the view that ‘A man who
does not trust himself will never really trust anybody.’ Two centuries later we find in
Goethe’s Faust the line, ‘Just trust yourself and you’ll learn the art of living.’ In the
uncertain aftermath of the American Presidential election of 2000, when the exact
nature of the vote in Florida was still being discussed, Bill Clinton commented, ‘The
American people have spoken…but it’s going to take a little while to determine
exactly what they said.’ The remark would have been appreciated by the great 19thcentury Conservative statesman, Lord Salisbury, who after a by-election in 1877
said wryly, ‘One of the nuisances of the ballot is that when the oracle has spoken
you never know what it means.’
Sometimes it is the precise wording of a quotation which is reworked. In 1931,
Rudyard Kipling coined the phrase ‘Power without responsibility.’ In our own time,
the Chilean writer Ariel Dorfman offers the revision: ‘Responsibility without power,
the fate of the secretary through the ages.’
The advisability of taking thought before committing oneself to a course is often
pointed out. ‘The closer these practical probabilities drive war toward the
absolute…the more imperative the need not to take the first step without considering the last,’ warned the Prussian military theorist Karl von Clausewitz. An earlier
quotation, attributed to Edmund Burke, looks at the dangers of large-scale
undertakings:
Those who carry on great public schemes must be proof against the most
fatiguing delays, the most mortifying disappointments, the most shocking
insults, and, worst of all, the presumptuous judgements of the ignorant upon
their designs.
We think of concern about the influence of spin-doctors to be a comparatively
recent phenomenon, but John Buchan in The Three Hostages (1924) has a
recognizable account of the process: ‘Have you ever considered what a diabolical
weapon that can be—using all the channels of modern publicity to poison and warp
men’s minds?’ He described it as the most dangerous thing on earth, although
happily in the long run (and having ‘sown the world with mischief’) self-defeating.
Again, the accuracy of media reports is frequently criticized today, but it was in
1807 that Thomas Jefferson wrote, ‘Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a
newspaper. Truth itself becomes suspicious by being put into that polluted vehicle.’
Power has traditionally been seen as a dangerous commodity. ‘Excessive dealings
with tyrants are not good for the security of free states’ said the Athenian statesman
Demosthenes. In the sixteenth century, Thomas More warned that, ‘Anyone who
campaigns for public office becomes disqualified for holding any office at all.’ On the
other hand, Nathan Hale, the American revolutionary hanged as a spy by the British
in 1776, thought that ‘Every kind of service necessary to the public good becomes
honourable by being necessary.’ In the twentieth century Willy Brandt was
determinedly optimistic: ‘We want to risk more democracy.’
Some quotations reflect a personal passion. ‘Good food is always a trouble and its
preparation should be regarded as a labour of love,’ said Elizabeth David in 1951,
introducing her groundbreaking French Country Cooking. The English ceramic
designer Susie Cooper pointed out, sensibly, the advantages of her chosen
medium. ‘Pottery…is a practical and lasting form of art. Not everyone can afford
original paintings, but most people can afford pottery.’ Another ceramic artist,
Clarice Cliff, reflected, ‘Colour seems to radiate happiness and the spirit of modern
life and movement, and I cannot put too much of it in my designs to please women.’
The sculptor Barbara Hepworth said of her own work, ‘I rarely draw what I see—I
draw what I feel in my own body.’ The chemist Dorothy Hodgkin, a Nobel prizewinner, said of her early engagement in her subject, ‘I was captured for life by
chemistry and by crystals.’ The French painter Paul Cézanne asserted, ‘I will
astonish Paris with an apple.’
A number of quotations bring the individuality (and story) of the speaker strongly to
mind. ‘I will not be triumphed over’ said Cleopatra (according to the Roman historian
Livy). ‘Trifles make perfection, and perfection is no trifle’ said Michelangelo
(according to Samuel Smiles). Lord Melbourne, the Prime Minister who liked the
Garter because there was ‘no damned merit’ about it, had a clear view of the
management of higher education: ‘Universities never reform themselves; everyone
knows that.’ Theodore Roosevelt likened the attempt to make an agreement with
Colombia to trying to nail currant jelly to a wall. ‘And the failure to nail currant jelly to
the wall is not due to the nail. It’s due to the currant jelly.’ The explorer Ernest
Shackleton thought that, ‘Superhuman effort isn’t worth a damn unless it achieves
results.’ Eleanor Roosevelt, speaking to the new President after the sudden death
of her husband Franklin, said to Harry Truman, ‘Is there anything we can do for
you? For you are the one in trouble now.’ The Canadian writer Robert MacNeil said
of reading aloud to children, ‘Parents can plant magic in a child’s mind through
certain words spoken with some thrilling quality of voice.’
The fifth edition, of 1999, for the first time gave proper place to the sacred texts of
world religions other than Christianity. This was of course appropriate to a
multicultural age, but it was fascinating to see how words and phrases from such
sources were already permeating the English language. More contextual
information was provided: because something is familiar to one section of our
readership, we cannot necessarily assume that everyone will know it. We also
responded to queries from readers by restoring proverbs and nursery rhymes (it
has been clear from correspondence over the years that our readers expect to find
this kind of material in the Dictionary).
The 1999 edition was also the first to be compiled online, and this fed back to the
presentation of material: more navigational paths were provided for our readers,
including a consciously generous system of cross-referencing. Particular categories
of quotation, which in the main had previously been buried in the Anonymous
section, were brought together in special category sections integrated into the main
sequence: for example, Advertising slogans and Newspaper headlines.
The world of quotations is a kaleidoscopic one. What of the future?
The collection of quotations, and background material, will continue, and new
information may be discovered relating even to apparently familiar sayings. The
54
comment on T. E. Lawrence, ‘Always backing into the limelight’, is traditionally
attributed to Lord Berners, but we now know that a similar comment was made by
George Bernard Shaw, and recorded in a contemporary source. The diaries of the
German diplomat, Count Harry Kessler, tell of a meeting with Shaw in November
1929. Lawrence had apparently complained that every move of his was followed by
the Press, eliciting the Shavian response, ‘You always hide just in the middle of the
limelight.’ The information came to light just too late to be fully covered by this
edition.
What will perhaps be considered the most famous soundbite of 2003 (‘Ladies and
gentlemen, we got him’—Paul Bremer on the capture of Saddam Hussein) was
uttered after the book went to Press. Topical material will always be a problem, not
least because we have a devoted, and protective, readership. Those who care for
the Dictionary are, rightly, concerned for its quality: less rightly, they may then
extrapolate the view that the inclusion of topical or ephemeral material is somehow
likely to devalue an adjacent quotation from classical literature. While having the
charge of an iconic reference book is properly a serious responsibility, we still need
to remember that we are publishing for our own times. A quotations collection
published in 2004 needs to include the highest profile quotations of the recent past,
though with the awareness that by the time the next edition is published some of
them will be dropped. In the interim, however, we cannot tell people what they
should remember, or refuse to answer questions which they may reasonably ask.
In compiling the new edition, we have once more drawn on the resources of Oxford
Quotations Dictionaries: our published texts (and the research which lies behind
them), and our growing database of new quotations derived from our reading
programme. As always we have benefited from the generosity of readers who take
the trouble to write to us with questions, comments, and suggestions. Colleagues in
the Reference Department have again put forward quotations encountered in work
and leisure. Among those to whom we are particularly grateful for contributions of
material or solutions to particular questions, we would like to thank Matthew Carter,
Margot Charlton, Mike Clark, Susie Dent, Henry Hardy, Antony Jay, Ian Linton, Kirk
Marlow, Nigel Rees, Ned Sherrin, Donald Smith, and Sarah Waldram. Finally, and
most importantly, Susan Ratcliffe’s editorial contribution has been of key importance in the preparation of this edition.
55
In his Introduction to the First Edition, Bernard Darwin envisaged typical readers of
the Dictionary as ‘friends by the fireside…indulging in a heated quoting-match’, or
as allies trying to solve a crossword puzzle. In 2004, readers are as likely to turn to
it as a resource when trying to outdo a contestant on a television quiz show, solving
a reference found while browsing the Net, or preparing for a presentation of their
own. But although there are over sixty years, and infinite cultural and technological
differences, between the worlds of the first and sixth editions, there is still a
common thread: the fascination with words identified by Darwin in his opening
sentence: ‘Quotation brings to many people one of the intensest joys of living.’ It is
in response to this continuing fascination that we monitor the language and collect
quotations. It is as always our aim to edit a text that for our own time will answer the
key quotations questions, ‘Who said that?’ and ‘What’s been said about this?’
Elizabeth Knowles
Oxford 2004
How to use the Dictionary
The sequence of entries is by alphabetical order of author, usually by surname but
with occasional exceptions such as members of royal families (e.g. Diana,
Princess of Wales and Elizabeth II) and Popes (John Paul II), or authors known
by a pseudonym (‘Saki’) or a nickname (Caligula). In general authors’ names are
given in the form by which they are best known, so that we have Harold Macmillan
(not Lord Stockton), George Eliot (not Mary Ann Evans), and H.G.Wells (not
Herbert George Wells). Collections such as Anonymous, the Bible, the Book of
Common Prayer, the Missal, and so forth, are included in the alphabetical
sequence. Some Anonymous quotations may be included in one of the special
category sections (see below).
Author names are followed by dates of birth and death (where known) and brief
descriptions; where appropriate, cross-references ( ) are then given to quotations
about that author elsewhere in the text (on Byron: see Lamb). Cross-references
are also made to other entries in which the author appears, e.g. ‘see also
Epitaphs’ and ‘see also Lennon and McCartney’. Within each author entry,
quotations are separated by literary form (novels, plays, poems: see further below)
and within each group arranged by order of title, ‘a’ and ‘the’ being ignored. Foreignlanguage text is given for most literary quotations, or if it is felt that the quotation is
familiar in the language of origin.
Quotations from diaries, letters, and speeches are given in chronological order and
usually follow the literary or published works quoted, with the form for which the
author is best known taking precedence. Thus in the case of political figures,
speeches appear first, just as poetry quotations precede those in prose for poets,
and poetry quotations come second for an author regarded primarily as a novelist.
Contextual information regarded as essential to a full appreciation of the quotation
precedes the text in an italicized note; information seen as providing useful
amplification follows in an italicized note. Each quotation is accompanied by a
bibliographical note of the source from which the quotation is taken. Titles of
published volumes (Don Juan by Byron and David Copperfield by Charles Dickens)
appear in italics; titles of short stories and poems not published as volumes in their
own right, and individual song titles, are given in plain type inside inverted commas
(‘Ode to a Nightingale’ by John Keats and ‘Both Sides Now’ by Joni Mitchell).
Quotations from secondary sources such as biographies and other writer’s works,
to which a date in the author’s lifetime can be assigned, are arranged in sequence
with diary entries, letters and speeches. Other quotations from secondary sources
and attributed quotations which cannot be so dated are arranged in alphabetical
order of quotation text.
All numbers in source references are given in arabic, with the exception of lowercase roman numerals denoting quotations from prefatory matter, whose page
numbering is separate from the main text. The numbering itself relates to the
beginning of the quotation, whether or not it runs on to another stanza or line in the
original. Where possible, chapter numbers have been offered for prose works.
Within the alphabetical sequence there are a number of special category entries,
such as Advertising slogans, Catchphrases, Film lines, Misquotations, and
Newspaper headlines and leaders. Quotations in these sections are arranged
alphabetically according to the first word of the quotation (ignoring ‘a’ and ‘the’), and
marked with a diamond symbol ( ). The special categories contained in this model
are shown below:
A date in brackets indicates first publication in volume form of the work cited.
Unless otherwise stated, the dates thus offered are intended as chronological
guides only and do not necessarily indicate the date of the text cited; where the
latter is of significance, this has been stated. Where neither date of publication nor
of composition is known, an approximate date (e.g. ‘c.1625’) may indicate the likely
date of composition. Where there is a large discrepancy between date of
composition (or performance) and of publication, in most cases the former only has
been given (e.g. ‘written 1725’, ‘performed 1622’).
Advertising slogans
Mottoes
Borrowed titles
Newspaper headlines and leaders
Catchphrases
Official advice
Closing lines
Opening lines
Epitaphs
Political slogans and songs
Film lines
Prayers
Film titles
Sayings
Last words
Songs, spirituals, and shanties
Military sayings, slogans, and songs
Telegrams
Misquotations
Toasts
Spellings have been Anglicized and modernized except in those cases, such as
Burns or Chaucer, where this would have been inappropriate; capitalization has
been retained only for personifications; with rare exceptions, verse has been
aligned with the left hand margin. Italic type has been used for all foreign-language
originals.
Sub-headings (shown between braces) have been used as a guide to novel
titles under Dickens, for the names of books under the Bible (arranged canonically,
not alphabetically), and for plays and poems under Shakespeare. Anonymous
quotations are grouped by language.
Cross-references ( ) to specific quotations are used to direct the user to another
related item. In each case a reference is given to an author’s name or to the title of
a special category entry. In some cases, the quotation may exist in two forms, or
56
may depend on an earlier source not quoted in its own right; when that happens,
the subordinate quotation is given directly below the quotation to which it relates.
Authors who have their own entry are typographically distinguished by the use of
bold (‘of William Shakespeare’, ‘by Mae West’) in context or source notes.
Keyword Search
The most significant words from each quotation can be traced via the Keyword
Search function, allowing individual quotations to be accessed. The user can enter
one or more keywords, up to a maximum of three. The results list will feature a
short line from each of the quotations matching the search term(s), which can then
be accessed in the usual way.
57
In Europe:
This equipment complies with the requirements of Directive 89/336/
EEC as amended by 93/68/EEC.
Dieses Gerät entspricht den Anforderungen der EG-Richtlinie 89/
336/EWG mit Änderung 93/68/EWG.
Ce matériel répond aux exigences contenues dans la directive 89/
336/CEE modifiée par la directive 93/68/CEE.
Dit apparaat voldoet aan de eisen van de richtlijn 89/336/EEG,
gewijzigd door 93/68/EEG.
Dette udstyr overholder kravene i direktiv nr. 89/336/EEC med tillæg
nr. 93/68/EEC.
Quest’apparecchio è conforme ai requisiti della direttiva 89/336/EEC
come emendata dalla direttiva 93/68/EEC.
∏ ÂÁηٿÛÙ·ÛË ·˘Ù‹ ·ÓÙ·ÔÎÚ›ÓÂÙ·È ÛÙȘ ··ÈÙ‹ÛÂȘ ÙˆÓ Ô‰ËÁÈÒÓ
Ù˘ ∂˘Úˆ·˚΋˜ ∂ÓˆÛ˘ 89/336/∂√∫, fiˆ˜ Ô Î·ÓÔÓÈÛÌfi˜ ·˘Ùfi˜
Û˘ÌÏËÚÒıËΠ·fi ÙËÓ Ô‰ËÁ›· 93/68/∂√∫.
Este equipamento obedece às exigências da directiva 89/336/CEE
na sua versão corrigida pela directiva 93/68/CEE.
Este aparato satisface las exigencias de la Directiva 89/336/CEE,
modificada por medio de la 93/68/CEE.
Denna utrustning uppfyller kraven enligt riktlinjen 89/336/EEC så som
kompletteras av 93/68/EEC.
Dette produktet oppfyller betingelsene i direktivet 89/336/EEC i
endringen 93/68/EEC.
Tämä laite täyttää direktiivin 89/336/EEC vaatimukset, jota on
muutettu direktiivillä 93/68/EEC.
58
SHARP CORPORATION
PRINTED IN CHINA
05EGK (TINSE0832EHZZ)