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Use an e-resource

Oxford English Dictionary

Oxford English Dictionary online.

This e-resource is available from a library computer and from home.

The Oxford English Dictionary is widely regarded as the accepted authority on the English language. It is the most comprehensive record or the English language in the world. As a historical dictionary, the Oxford English Dictionary is very different from those of current English, in which the focus is on present-day meanings. You'll still find these in the Oxford English Dictionary, but you'll also find the history of individual words, and of the language - traced through more than 3 million quotations.

The resource

  • The only English dictionary that aims to trace the first recorded use of every sense of every word, to show when it entered language
  • The Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary allows users to explore the different words used for a particular concept or meaning over time
  • Oxford English Dictionary timelines help users discover when words entered the English language by subject, region, or origin
  • Each entry shows sense development, quotation evidence, and links to related entries - unlocking the history of every word
  • Quarterly updates include hundreds of new and revised meanings

Search and discover

  • Quick and Advanced search options available from every page
  • Seach and browse by subject, region, usage, or by language or origin
  • Show or hide full word origins for each sense of the word

From a library computer:

Go to Oxford English Dictionary

What you will need to login:

  • Your library card number

Frequently asked questions

I am trying to log in but have forgotten my library card number?

You will need to visit your local library with identification and proof of address (i.e. driving licence, utility bill) so we can look you up and provide you with your library card number.

Central Library


Tel: 024 7683 2314

Fax: 024 7622 0465

Central Library
Smithford Way

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