1 Lexicography as a science 5
1.1 Lexicography as a science 5
1.2 The evolution of English lexicography 12
2. The usage of IT in the process of translation 23
2.1 Dictionary: notion, functions, classification, components 23
2.2 Definition of Electronic dictionary 27
2.3 The usage of IT in the process of translation 31
List of literature 38
It’s well known that we can’t imagine studying any language in the world without such an important thing as a dictionary. It’s obvious that it plays the most leading role in studying a language. But there’s such a problem as what kind of a dictionary we must choose to improve our speech skills day by day.
This report is devoted to the lexicography as a science of dictionary-making. The pursuit of lexicography is divided into two related disciplines:
Practical lexicography is the art or craft of compiling, writing and editing dictionaries.
Theoretical lexicography is the scholarly discipline of analyzing and describing the semantic relationships within the lexicon (vocabulary) of a language and developing theories of dictionary components and structures linking the data in dictionaries. This is sometimes referred to as met lexicography.
A person devoted to lexicography is called a lexicographer, famously defined in Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language (1755) as "A writer of dictionaries; a harmless drudge that busies himself in tracing the original, and detailing the signification of words".
General lexicography focuses on the design, compilation, use and evaluation of general dictionaries, i.e. dictionaries that provide a description of the language in general use. Such a dictionary is usually called a general dictionary or LGP dictionary. Specialized lexicography focuses on the design, compilation, use and evaluation of specialized dictionaries, i.e. dictionaries that are devoted to a (relatively restricted) set of linguistic and factual elements of one or more specialist subject fields, e.g. legal lexicography. Such a dictionary is usually called a specialized dictionary or LSP dictionary.
1.1 Lexicography as a science
The theory and practice of compiling dictionaries is called lexicography.
In other words it is the art and craft of writing dictionaries.
The Erya, from the early 3rd century BC, was the first Chinese language dictionary. The book organized Chinese characters by semantic groups. The intention of this dictionary was to explain the true meaning and interpretation of words in the context of older ancient texts.
One of the earliest dictionaries known, and which is still extant today in an abridged form, was written in Latin during the reign of the emperor Augustus. It is known by the title De Significatu Verborum ("On the meaning of words") and was originally compiled by Verrius Flaccus. It was twice abridged in succeeding centuries, first by Sextus Pompeius Festus, and then by Paul the Deacon. Verrius Flaccus' dictionary was an abridged list of difficult or antiquated words, whose usage was illustrated by quotations from early Roman authors.
The word "dictionary" comes from neoclassical Latin, dictio, meaning simply "word".
The history of compiling dictionaries for English comes as far back as The Old English period, where we can find glosses of religious books. Regular bilingual dictionaries began to appear in the 15th century. These dictionaries were Anglo-Latin, Anglo-German, Anglo-French.
The first true English dictionary was Robert Cawdrey's Table Alphabetical of 1604, although it only included 3,000 words and the definitions it contained were little more than synonyms. The first one to be at all comprehensive was Thomas Blount's dictionary Glossographia of 1656.
In 1721 an English scientist and writer Nathaniel Bailey published the 1st etymological dictionary which explained the origin of English words. It was called Universal Etymological English Dictionary. Bailey’s entries are fuller, compared with the glosses in the hard-word books, and there’re more of them (as many as 60, 000 in the 1736 edition), but his definitions lack illustrative support, and he gives little guidance about usage.
1.2 The evolution of English lexicography
The English Dictionary, like the English Constitution, is the creation of no one man, and of no one age; it is a growth that has slowly developed itself adown the ages. Its beginnings lie far back in times almost prehistoric. And these beginnings themselves, although the English Dictionary of today is lineally developed from them, were neither Dictionaries, nor even English. As to their language, they were in the first place and principally Latin: as to their substance, they consisted, in large part at least, of glosses. They were Latin, because at the time to which we refer, the seventh and eighth centuries of our era, Latin was in Western Europe the only language of books, the learning of Latin the portal to all learning. And they were glosses in this wise: the possessor of a Latin book, or the member of a religious community which were the fortunate possessors of half-a-dozen books, in his ordinary reading of this literature, here and there came across a difficult word which lay outside the familiar Latin vocabulary. When he had ascertained the meaning of this, he often, as a help to his own memory, and a friendly service to those who might handle the book after him, wrote the meaning over the word in the original text, in a smaller hand, sometimes in easier Latin, sometimes, if he knew no Latin equivalent, in a word of his own vernacular. Such an explanatory word written over a word of the text is a gloss. Nearly all the Latin MSS. of religious or practical treatises, that have come down to us from the Middle Ages, contain examples of such glosses, sometimes few, sometimes many. It may naturally be supposed that this glossing of MSS. began in Celtic and Teutonic, rather than in Romanic lands. In the latter, the old Latin was not yet so dead, nor the vulgar idioms that were growing out of it, as yet so distinct from it, as to render the glossing of the one by the other needful. The relation of Latin to, say, the Romanic of Provence, was like that of literary English to Lancashire or Somerset dialect; no one thinks of glossing a literary English book by Somersetshire word-forms; for, if he can read at all, it is the literary English that he does read. So if the monk of Burgundy or Provence could read at all, it was the Book-Latin that he could and did read. But, to the Teuton or the Celt, Latin was an entirely foreign tongue, the meaning of whose words he could not guess by any likeness to his own; by him Latin had been acquired by slow and painful labour, and to him the gloss was an important aid. To the modern philologist, Teutonic or Celtic, these glosses are very precious; they have preserved for us a large number of Old English, Old Irish, Old German words that occur nowhere else, and which, but for the work of the old glossators, would have been lost for ever. No inconsiderable portion of the oldest English vocabulary has been recovered entirely from these interlinear glosses; and we may anticipate important additions to that vocabulary when Professor Napier gives us the volume in which he has been gathering up all the unpublished glosses that yet remain in MSS.