A History of Roget's Thesaurus: Origins, Development, and Design

Overview

Roget's Thesaurus was first published in 1852 and has come to be one of the most famous and widely-used reference works in the world. This is the first account of its genesis. Werner Hüllen contends that synonymy (words with similar meanings) is a feature of language without which we could not communicate. He describes the development in the theory and practice of synonymy from Plato to the seventeenth century, when the first English synonym dictionaries began to appear. Roget's Thesaurus, the first synonym ...

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Overview

Roget's Thesaurus was first published in 1852 and has come to be one of the most famous and widely-used reference works in the world. This is the first account of its genesis. Werner Hüllen contends that synonymy (words with similar meanings) is a feature of language without which we could not communicate. He describes the development in the theory and practice of synonymy from Plato to the seventeenth century, when the first English synonym dictionaries began to appear. Roget's Thesaurus, the first synonym dictionary arranged in topical order, represents an enormously significant peak in this development. This book exposes the conceptual framework behind the Thesaurus and shows how it can be interpreted as a predecessor of linguistic semantics.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199281992
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 4/7/2005
  • Pages: 420
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 6.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Werner Hüllen is Professor Emeritus of English Linguistics at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany. He has published widely on the teaching and learning of English as a foreign language. His most recent interest is the history of linguistics, particularly lexicography. On the occasion of his sixtieth birthday, Professor Hüllen was awarded a two-volume Festschrift, Perspectives on Language in Performance, edited by Wolfgang Lörscher and Rainer Schulze, (Tübingen 1987). On the occasion of his seventy-fifth birthday, the members of the Oxford based Henry Sweet Society for the History of Linguistic Ideas, whose president he was between 1992 and 2002, honoured him with a reprint of Collected Papers on the History of Linguistic Ideas, edited by Michael M. Isermann (Münster 2002).

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. Peter Mark Roget and his ideas
3. Words, words, words
4. Synonymy: examples of early statements and practices
5. The beginnings of practical synonymy
6. The emergence of the English synonym dictionary
7. The topical tradition on English lexicography
8. Roget's Thesaurus: a topical dictionary of synonyms
Bibliography
Appendix
Index

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