Contributing to the OED
Detailed information on contributing words and evidence to the OED, including details on the type of information that is particularly helpful to our editors and how to submit this, can be found here.
If you would be especially interested to contribute an antedating, information on our OED antedatings appeal can be found here.
How can the OED help researchers?
We are always working to collate thoughts, ideas, and trends, and continue iterative feedback with an aim to develop new or improved OED research tools and features. Some of the tools we are currently exploring and developing are listed below.
OED Researcher API
The OED Researcher API aims to provide unprecedented access to the OED‘s huge and uniquely curated English language dataset.
It will enable academic researchers to quickly and easily access and manipulate the OED‘s data, using a series of sophisticated endpoints to surface data that will fuel new and exciting avenues of research.
We have developed a prototype of the OED Researcher API and are now inviting academic researchers interested in employing such a tool in their work to contribute their insights and ideas to further inform its development.
View the documentation for the prototype and register your interest in testing the prototype here.
The OED Text Visualizer
As part of our exploration of new ways for researchers to harness the power of the OED‘s dataset, a Text Visualizer application is currently in development.
Input your text and the Text Visualizer will tokenize, lemmatize, and disambiguate the words within the text, annotating the senses with OED data.
You will be able to generate a visualization and exportable file detailing how many times a word has been used in a particular passage, its earliest known recorded use, language of origin, both contemporary and modern frequency of use, and more.
There is more information about this tool available on this page, where you can also test it on a passage of text.
Our proposed new lemmatizer tool
One functionality we are currently experimenting with is a lemmatizer to normalize spelling variation in historical texts. We have developed an initial small-scale example and are keen to hear from researchers how they anticipate they might use a lemmatizer on a larger scale in their research, and what formats and features would be most useful for this work. Please watch our video demonstrating the functionality of the lemmatizer, and complete a short survey to share your thoughts on this tool.
Information about the OED
The OED is updated on a quarterly basis, and the updates make up the Third Edition of the OED. The material added to the dictionary includes revised versions of existing entries (which replace the older versions), and new words and senses both within the alphabetical sequence of revised entries and also across the whole A to Z range.
Our latest update can be found on the updates page of the OED Online.
Detailed information on how to use the OED, with guides to the quick search, advanced search, Historical Thesaurus, and more can be found on this page on the OED Online site.
A series of short video guides are also available to view here.
Other information on the site which might be of use includes:
Words come into the English language in all manner of ways. The Oxford English Dictionary’s mission is to record all of these word stories, capturing their development as they continue to unfold. You can find information about how a word can be added to the OED here, or view our interactive graphic about the journey of a word.