When a word has more than one meaning, the GUIDEWORDS help you to find the right one quickly.
Example sentences in italics are based on natural written and spoken English and show how the word ismost commonly used.
Meanings that are slightly different from the main definition are explained:
. by a word or phrase in round brackets (= oo.) within an example sentence
. by a complete sentence. not in italics. among
the example sentences
A single word in bold shows that it is often found with the word being looked up. Sometimes the main word and one or more other words are shown inbold together. This means that this group of words has a special meaning which is not clear from the meanings of the separate words.
For further explanation see the Language Portrait on Words used together at WORD.
Special symbols mark words which learners might confuse with similar words in their own language. The dictionary contains useful lists of these words: see Language Portrait on FalseFriends at FALSE for an explanation of how to use these symbols and lists.
Labels in italics give style and usage information. When they are placed before the definition they are true for all uses of the word. See the list at the front of the dictionary and the Language Portrait on Labels.
Well-known phrases from popular songs, television, films, books, plays and sayings by famous people aresometimes included after the examples.
Parts of speech (verb. noun. adjective etc.) are given in italics. See the notes on grammar on the following pages.
Some words are given more than one part of speech. In these cases, a single definition explains all the parts of speech mentioned.
obj. after a verb shows that it always has an object (it is transitive).
(obj) after a verb shows that itsometimes has an object (it can be transitive or intransitive).
Grammar information is explained using example sentences. Grammar codes are given in square brackets [ ]. See the list at the front of the dictionary .
. When grammar information is given before the
defínítion, the grammar pattern is true for all uses of the word.
. When grammar information is given after an eXilmple, that grammarpattern is true only for particular uses of the word.
Irregular verb forms, plurals, comparatives and superlatives are shown.
British (f) and American ($) pronunciations are given using the international phonetic alphabet. The symbols are explained in the Pronunciation Table at the end ofthe dictionary.
Labels in italics show differences between British. American and Australian English. Wordsand phrases, spellings and particular meanings are labelled. See the Language Portrait on Varieties of English at VARIETY.
Using a dictionary
What dictionaries do I need?
If possible, you should buy two dictionaries: a good bilingual dictionary and a good English-English dictionary. The bilingual dictionary is quicker and easier for you to understand; the English-English dictionary may giveyou more information about a word or phrase, and it is also a good idea for you t to work in English as much as possible. Here are some current recommended English-English dictionaries:
Large dictionaries Medium-sized dictionaries
Cambridge International Dictionary of English Collins COBUlLD Essential Dictionary
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English Oxford Wordpower Dictionary
CollinsCOBUlLD English Dictionary Longman Active Study Dictionary
Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary
What information does a dictionary give me?
.the meaning, e.g. homesick = unhappy when you are away from home for a long time
. the pronunciation, e.g. chaos Ikems/, dreadful/dredfull, island laIl~nd!
. the part of speech, e.g. dirty adj (= adjective), lose v (= verb), law n (= noun)
. any special...