The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Current English: Thumb Index

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9780198613206: The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Current English: Thumb Index

New features of this contemporary English reference work include current spelling trends, definitions of new words, extended usage notes, new pronunciations and etymologies, and improved ease of use.

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Based on the British National Corpus (a database of more than 100 million words) and Oxford University Press data files, this new edition continues the tradition of providing a descriptive "snapshot" approach to language, with 230,000 prose-style definitions for 150,000 entries. This is 25 percent more material than the eighth edition: 7,000 new words and phrases, more than 300 new boxed usage notes, and more entries from North America. As with the last edition, prefatory material includes an introductory essay that surveys English over the past 15 centuries and a usage guide. The same format is employed within definitions (IPA pronunciation, American spelling, some illustrative examples, adjectival and inflected forms, parts of speech and usage labels, cross-references to comparison words, and etymologies for some words).

Different from the eighth edition is a "denesting" policy that reduces the number of phrases and idioms nested within definitions; many of these now constitute headwords rather than parts of other definitions (i.e., Bible bashing, Bible belt, and Bible oath are now headwords rather than definitions within the entry Bible). Also new are many terms (e.g., cyberspace, Internet, ecotourism, multiculturalism), updated pronunciations for many words, and more attention to North American words and phrases. As with the eighth edition, there are no geographic names, biographical names, or illustrations. Appendixes include countries of the world (with currency units); books of the Bible; Greek, Russian, and Roman alphabets; chemical elements; major divisions of geologic time; the Beaufort scale of wind speed; a biological classification scheme; a style guide; a chart of Indo-European languages; terms for groups; and an index to these supplements.

The ninth edition of The Concise Oxford Dictionary is different enough from the eighth to merit purchase. The Concise Oxford will not be a first stop for Americans, but its focus on international English, its currency, and its descriptive approach make it an excellent complement to major American-English desk dictionaries. Public and academic libraries should purchase.

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"Its focus on international English, its currency, and its descriptive approach make it an excellent complement to majore American-English desk dictionaries."--Booklist


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