Oxford Dictionary of English

ISBN 13: 9780198610571

Oxford Dictionary of English

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9780198610571: Oxford Dictionary of English
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The Oxford Dictionary of English is at the forefront of language research, focusing on English as it is used today, informed by the most up-to-date evidence from the largest language research programme in the world, including the 800-million-word Oxford English Corpus. This revised edition includes hundreds of brand-new words and senses, as well as up-to-date encyclopedic information, and extensive appendices covering topics such as countries, heads of state, and chemical elements. The dictionary includes 12 months' access* to Oxford's premium online dictionary and thesaurus service, Oxford Dictionaries Online, updated regularly with the latest developments to words and meanings, so you will have the most accurate picture of English available. Find out more about our living language using Oxford Dictionaries Online. Hear how words are spoken with thousands of audio pronunciations, and access over 1.9 million real English example sentences to see how words are used in context. Improve your confidence in writing with helpful grammar and punctuation guides, full thesaurus information, style and usage help, and much more. *Available in selected markets (UK, Europe, Australia, Canada, and South Africa). Terms and conditions apply; please see www.oxforddictionaries.com/access for information.

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Review:

For many speakers and learners of English, the word "Oxford" spells authority about language. The second edition of the Oxford Dictionary of English is no exception. Any dictionary which comes from Oxford University Press (whose origins lie in the Middle Ages, the foundation of the university and the dawn of printing) tends to be in a different league from its competitors.

Based on the "Oxford English Corpus", language databases, which amount to "hundreds of millions of words of written and spoken English in machine-readable form", this hefty single-volume dictionary has four million words of text. That includes 355,000 words phrases and definitions, 12,000 encyclopaedic entries and 68,000 explanations. The statistics are mind blowing.

Like all good dictionaries it's bang up to date. "Greasy spoon", "data smog" and "WMD" are all here, scrupulously glossed. So, of course are wonderful, old, near-obsolete words like "editrice" and "bouffant". Plenty of proper names get in too. Did you know that a "Queensland blue" is a cattle dog with a dark speckled body as opposed to a "Queensland nut" which is another name for the macadamia nut?

Like other new dictionaries the Oxford Dictionary of English provides boxed usage notes which point up, say, the difference between "pedal" and "peddle" or discuss the vexed old question of whether infinitives may be split. More unusual are the 14 detailed appendices on, for example, English in electronic communications, collective nouns and proof-reading marks. Most useful of all is probably the "Guide to Good English" which manages to be both admirably concise and immaculately clear. --Susan Elkin

Review:

"For all its entries, the Oxford has good clear definitions, excellent descriptions of word origins, and plenty of usage boxes." (Richard Bell, Writing Magazine)

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