Skip to main content

Dictionary or Thesaurus?

Dictionaries and thesauri are reference books for words. The best way to understand the difference between dictionary and thesaurus is clarifying the terms individually.

What is a Dictionary?

A dictionary contains a list of words in alphabetical order, together with their definitions, pronunciations, etymologies or spellings.
definition: a statement that explains the meaning of the word in the dictionary
pronunciation: a way in which the word is pronounced
Etymology: the origin and history of the word and its meaning
spelling: the correct way of forming the word

Here is an example of a dictionary entry for the noun 'money':

money (noun): what you earn and use to pay for things

If you don't know the meaning or correct spelling of a word, look it up in the dictionary.

What is a Thesaurus?

A thesaurus contains a list of words in alphabetical order, that are similar in meaning (synonyms).
A thesaurus can include the opposite of a word.

Here is an example of a thesaurus entry for the noun 'money':

money (noun): bill, cash, check, fund, salary, wage


While a dictionary gives the meaning of a word, a thesaurus gives a list of words that have similar
meanings for each entry.

Grammar Card

Dictionary or Thesaurus?


Popular posts from this blog

List of irregular verbs

In English, verbs can be regular or irregular .   


The simplest definition of a noun is that it is a word that refers to a person (such as John or teacher), thing (such as ball or table), place (such as Harvard or university) or idea (such as love or emotion). What is a Noun? Countable and Uncountable noun It's important to identify between countable and uncountable nouns in English.  Common Nouns and Proper Nouns Names of people, places and things are called proper nouns. They always begin with capital letters. All other nouns are common nouns.  Collective Nouns Words such as family, team or bunch are collective nouns. They can be used with either a singular or a plural verb. Abstract and Concrete Nouns If your five physical senses (sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch) cannot detect something, it is an abstract noun.  Gender-specific nouns In some languages, nouns refer to specifically to males or females.  Compound Nouns A compound noun is a noun that consists of more than one word. Verbal

Cardinal Numbers in English