Roget's International Thesaurus®, fifth edition, is the original now completely expanded, reorganized, revised and updated the definitive thesaurus for the 21st century.
While retaining Dr. Peter Mark Roget's fundamental and brilliant category concept which groups all synonyms, antonyms and related words together for quick and easy comparison without all the needless repetition and cross referencing of alphabetical thesauruses, this new fifth edition is:
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About the Author
Dr. Robert L. Chapman, the founding editor of the Dictionary of American Slang, was a professor of English at Drew University.
Read an Excerpt
Like all great reference books, Roget's International Thesaurus® is the product of continuous improvement and long-term investment. The process began almost two centuries ago, in 1805, when Dr. Peter Mark Roget began compiling a list of useful words for his own convenience.
There have been glossaries and word lists since literature began. The revolutionary achievement of Dr. Roget, a physician with a penchant for organization, was his development of a brand new principle: the grouping of words according to ideas. This mechanism eliminates the need for groping through the entire alphabet posed by word books arranged in dictionary form (i.e. alphabetically), thus greatly increasing the efficiency of locating just the right word or expression for a particular circumstance. When in 1852 Roget published the first book ever to realize this concept with thoroughness and precision, he called it a "thesaurus" (from the Greek and Latin, meaning "treasury" or "storehouse"). And thesaurus it has remained to this day.
So successful was Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases, Classified and Arranged so as to Facilitate the Expression of Ideas and Assist in Literary Composition that a second edition followed one year later in 1853. By Dr. Roget's death in 1869 there had been no less than twenty-eight editions and printings.
Thomas Y. Crowell acquired the thesaurus from Roget's son, Dr. John Lewis Roget, and published the first Crowell edition in 1886. Roget's International Thesaurus® remained within the Crowell publishingfamily for the next nearly one hundred years. Each subsequent edition introduced more efficient and useful features, all of which have contributed to the quality of the present edition. Over the years, tens of thousands of new words and phrases were added, the coverage of foreign expressions increased, and the scope of the book expanded to include slang and useful quotations; a recent innovation was the numbering of the paragraphs for the user's convenience. By 1977, when the fourth edition was published by Harper & Row, Roget's International Thesaurus® had become a greatly expanded and improved book, yet one which still retained Roget's brilliant organization.
It is with a very special sense of pride that we present this fifth edition of Roget's International Thesaurus®. Along with the addition of new words and phrases, considerable updating and refinements in format and style, the most significant changes in this fifth edition are the rearrangement of the categories and the introduction of new ones to enable fuller coverage of terms of our times. Dr. Robert L. Chapman, revising editor for this new edition, explains the details and reasoning behind these changes in his Foreword.
A work of this scope is only possible through the combined effort of many people. We wish to particularly acknowledge the superior work of Dr. Robert L. Chapman, who reorganized, rethought and rewrote this edition.
Computer technology has made working with the technical aspects of the book more efficient. We wish to thank George Alexander for his valuable contributions. Our thanks for the editorial contributions of Andrea Sargent, Mary Kay Linge, Jill Korey, Kenneth Wright, Joe Ford, Ruth Koenisberg, Pamela Marshall, Dave Prout, Ellen Zucker, Frank Gribbon and Edward Mansour.
A special thanks to John Day, supervisor of reference production, who oversaw the complexity of turning the many discs and printouts during the various stages of development into final discs for composition. Our thanks to his staff: Douglas Elam, Elaine Verriest, Celeste Bantz, Ryon Fleming, Jim Hornfischer, Dorian Yeager, and Craig Young. Our appreciation to C. Linda Dingler for the new design; to Dianne Pinkowitz, Joseph Montebello and Helen Moore. And last, we wish to acknowledge the valuable contributions of Mark Liberman and Ken Church of Bell Labs.