Collins English Dictionary (Collins Complete and Unabridged): Complete & Unabridged

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9780007197521: Collins English Dictionary (Collins Complete and Unabridged): Complete & Unabridged

The most comprehensive and wide-ranging dictionary available – the richest range of language from the undisputed authority.

This new edition of the Collins English Dictionary has been fully revised to include thousands of the latest buzz and hi-tech words, as well as new meanings from the Bank of English, making it the most up-to-date dictionary available.

It includes a much wider and richer range of words than ever before, with regional and dialect words contributed by hundreds of people from all over the UK, and generous coverage of World English, particularly from Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa, and the USA. Its unparalleled coverage of scientific and technical entries has also been fully revised and updated by our team of leading academic experts.

Language notes give advice on using the right word in the right place, and thousands of word histories trace the roots of modern English.

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Review:

Collins English Dictionary has evolved into a glorious great slab of a reference book since its relatively modest first appearance in 1979. The 2003 version, rooted in the Bank of English, a 524-million word database launched in 1991, is the sixth edition.

Strong on clear definitions, derivations, cross-referencing, acronyms, technical and scientific terms and geographical place names, Collins English Dictionary also includes occasional boxed "language notes". Thus, for example, after "mitigate" we are usefully reminded that "Mitigate is sometimes used where militate is meant: 'His behaviour militates (not mitigates) against his chances of promotion.'" Interestingly, users of English are evidently becoming more relaxed about their language. Seventy words previously deemed taboo, including "arse," "crap" and "wank" are now described merely as slang. Perhaps rows of asterisks will soon be a thing of the past. Language changes continually and so do attitudes to it. There is a distinct sense of celebration in the latest Collins English Dictionary because English is one of the richest and most diverse of the world's languages and it is rapidly becoming a global lingua franca.

Jeremy Butterfield and his colleagues have made a splendid job of recording exactly where English is now. We may need to know what a "sex text" or a "dead-cat bounce" is today but, perhaps, in the quite near future such terms will fall out of use. That's why dictionaries need to be continuously updated, leaving earlier editions as reference works for language historians to study. It's also what makes dictionaries in general and Collins English Dictionary in particular so fascinating and why word lovers need the latest version on their shelves. --Susan Elkin

Review:

“wonderful coverage of current English … the layout is appealing to the read”
reader review on amazon.co.uk

“The best single-volume English dictionary … the typefaces used are the most attractive of any dictionary”
reader review on amazon.co.uk

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