Getting to the study of any language, not just English, we first decide on a training course on the materials which are going to do. But no less important is the question of the choice of a bilingual dictionary, which you will use in the learning process. After learning the language without a dictionary is not possible, you also need to know the translation of each new word or expression. And the information you will look in the dictionary, containing besides English your native language. Do you know how to use a dictionary?
Types of dictionaries
Of course, the most important in your life will be a bilingual dictionary that will help you understand the meaning of a word. I have over 12 years is, as they say, faithfully and The Oxford Russian Dictionary — publication containing the Anglo-Russian and Russian-English dictionaries. This weighty book of 1,300 pages. Despite the fact that many people are now accustomed to using electronic or online dictionaries, I remain committed to this dictionary, because it is really wonderful. It is on this basis we are going to learn how to use the dictionary of the English language.
In general, the types of dictionaries lot. Their classification includes several sections. I just want to note that all the dictionaries can be divided by the volume specified in their vocabulary. This dictionary is (unabridged), including more than 100 000 units; dictionaries average (semi-abridged), which is represented by 40 000 to 100 000 units, and a small dictionary (abridged, pocket size dictionaries), having in its composition from 10 000 to 40 000 units. The aforementioned dictionary is large, as it has more than 100 000 lexical units.
Selecting the dictionary — it’s everybody individually. It will depend on your level of English at the moment, the level of language you would like to achieve with time, the number of hours you can devote to learning English, as well as variants of training — individually, in a group home or in courses, etc. . But go to this choice seriously and responsibly. Since it is a high quality dictionary will help you in every possible way to master an unfamiliar language.
In addition to the widely used bilingual dictionaries monolingual (dictionaries). This English dictionary is not translated into your native language. But instead of explaining each lexical unit, that is, given its interpretation of the (definition). This dictionary is very useful when the level of English language proficiency tends to mark intermediate and above. You can always find out what means this or that word, read the description offered to him. I really like the book called Cambridge Learner’s Dictionary.
The structure of the dictionary
No matter how you use the dictionary, you should be aware of its structure, which will tell you how to easily find the information you need and use of the maxim of this book. The structure of the dictionary includes the following items: an introduction or preface; see «how to use the dictionary»; a list of the symbols used in the transcription; a list of acronyms and explanations; basis of a list of words, any additional material and references (bibliography). For example, the structure of The Oxford Russian Dictionary is as follows:
- Contents (Contents)
- Preface (Preface)
- How to use the Dictionary (Guide to the of the dictionary)
- The key to the transcription (Phonetic symbols used in the dictionary)
- Abbreviations and explanations (Abbreviations used in the dictionary)
- The main list of words (Russian-English, then English-Russian vocabulary)
- Additional material: table Russian declensions and conjugations (Tables of Russian declensions and conjugations); a list of English irregular verbs (English irregular verbs), Russian and English alphabet (The Russian alphabet and the English alphabet).
But the structure of the dictionary Cambridge Learner’s Dictionary:
- Contents (Contents)
- Introduction (Introduction)
- How to use the Dictionary (How to use this dictionary)
- For more information about how to use the dictionary (More information on using the dictionary), including symbols and the key to the transcription
- The main word list
- Appendix (Appendices). There are many books and at the end and in the middle. Among them: Common first names, Geographical names, Regular verb tenses, Irregular verbs, etc.
As you can see, some sections may be missing, some sections have different names, but that does not change the structure of the dictionary. And in a good dictionary is really a lot of useful information in addition to the translation or interpretation of the words.
How to use a dictionary to the maximum
In the process of learning English in our handbook for becoming bilingual dictionary (bilingual dictionary), which offers us a translation of vocabulary from English into their native language and vice versa. When we have something to translate, then we turn to the dictionary to learn the meaning of certain words. All this takes place as follows: open the dictionary and found the word translated, closed the dictionary. This method is suitable if you need to understand the meaning of the word, but not remember it. Because that word in your head does not remain. To any word etched in your mind and stay there, you need to work with the word. And it is necessary to begin by examining the entry to a given word, that is, reading all the material that the word concerned. And you can learn a lot of interesting and important points.
The dictionary entries good large vocabulary every word apart from the translation of the word may still be available the following information:
- synonyms for this word, and the differences in their meanings (synonyms)
- antonyms to the word (antonyms)
- phrases with the word (collocations)
- pronunciation and its variants (pronunciation), and they have a word may be two, and three
- use of the word in certain examples, constructions, designs, etc. (Usage)
- indication whether the word is used in relation to people or inanimate objects
- What part of speech is the word (word-class) and has what features
- and, of course, the list of values that can have the word.
Let’s examine one word presented in this paper dictionary. For example, take the word of call. That’s what gives us the dictionary:
- Of course, transcription for correct reading of the word [kƆ: l].
- It can be a noun, that we determine the designation of «n.», Which stands for «noun».
- As a noun it has the following values: the call, hail (cry, shout); shout (of bird), the call signal (of bugle); cry, cry, call (invitation, summons, demand); Ads games (at cards). The brackets are represented either synonyms of the word in a certain sense, a word that explains the meaning. Almost to each value are examples:
I heard a call for help — I heard a cry for help
the call of the sea — the call of the sea
the doctor is on call — doctor on call
I have many calls on my time — I have almost no free time.
Also as a noun word may be used and such expressions have the meanings indicated in parentheses:
telephone call — a call on the phone (message)
He returned my call — He paid me a return visit (visit)
There is no call for him to worry — he has nothing to worry (need)
- This word can be a verb, it is we define by marking «v.», Which stands for «verb».
- As a verb is transitive «t. — Transitive », it has the following values: call (name designate); to call, to wake (summon, arouse); to convene a meeting to declare (announce).
- Options idiomatic expressions (var. — Idioms): call into question (to question), call to order (call to order), etc.
- As an intransitive verb «i. — Intransitive », it has the following values: call, call out to (cry, shout); call (pay a visit). And below lists the values in conjunction with a variety of pretexts.
- And yet in the dictionary entry there is information about the use of the verb with different dialects (with advs. — With adverbs) and a list of difficult words (cpds. — Compounds), which include the call. For example: call down — call down curses on someone’s head — to call a curse on someone’s head; call-box — telephone booth, call-sign — call sign.
I did not give examples for each value of the verb, but they are there in sufficient quantity, to understand how to use this verb. And the values he is not small, but you need to choose the one that suits you the context or situation.
If you are using online dictionaries, such as resource www.multitran.ru, your attention is also represented a storehouse of useful information on any word of English. This dictionary also lists the part of speech, which may be your word, given all its possible values, but the most important thing (which I like) — the distribution of values for the categories and areas of expertise. For example, the word call as a noun in the field of accounting will be transferred to «deal with the premium» in the religious category as a «duty», and in English law as a «subpoena». And this is only a small part of what was presented. Moreover, below is a list of areas of activity and areas of expertise (eg, the automobile term programming, general vocabulary, radio, etc.), which can be found in the word. Each section lists examples of the use of the noun call.
Dictionary — is a treasure trove of knowledge. You have just read, how to use a dictionary. So use it to the maximum, to absorb all the information provided in this resource. And if you develop into a good habit to work with the dictionary, you’ll see how much benefit it brings you.