Dictionaries and Other Resources

There are no shortcuts to developing a sophisticated vocabulary. These dictionaries and related resources are highly recommended:

Please Note: Most of the following links provide unpaid access to these online publications.

 

  • Cambridge Dictionaries : an elegant resource that tells you 'what is usually meant' by a word, and gives you an accessible example of the word in its grammatical context.
  • OneLook : offers a short definition and links to other dictionaries that define the word in depth.
  • OED : the Oxford English Dictionary provides you with word derivations and history, back to earliest usage.
  • Wordnik.com : this site provides a wealth of contemporary examples of words in context, and thereby strengthens your understanding of new terms. You can also hear words pronounced, and link to a thesaurus and visual dictionary.
  • Merriam Webster's Dictionary of Synonyms and Antonyms will help you perceive the subtlety of and distinguish between similar terms. This can be ordered online for less than $5, including shipping.