Discipline, dilemmas, decisions and data distribution in the planning and compilation of monolingual dictionaries

Gouws R.H. (2006)

Article

Bilingual dictionaries play an important role in the standardisation of a language and are often the first dictionary type to be compiled for a given speech community. However, this may never lead to an underestimation of the role and importance of monolingual descriptive dictionaries in the early lexicographic development of a language. In the planning of first descriptive dictionaries the choice of the proper subtype and a consistent application of theoretical principles should be regarded as of extreme importance. Even the compilation of a restricted descriptive dictionary should be done according to similar theoretical principles as those applying to comprehensive dictionaries. This contribution indicates a number of dilemmas confronting the lexicographer during the compilation of restricted monolingual descriptive dictionaries. Attention is given to the role of lexicographic functions and the choice and presentation of lexicographic data, with special reference to the presentation of certain types of polysemous senses which are subjected to frequency of use restrictions. Emphasis is placed on the value of a heterogeneous article structure and a micro-architecture in the articles of restricted dictionaries.

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