Different uses of reference books

By:Alyssa Maldonado

A dictionary

A dictionary is collection of words in one or more specific languages, often listed alphabetically (or by radical and stroke for ideographic languages), with usage information,definitions, etymologies, phonetics, pronunciations, and other information;[1] or a book of words in one language with their equivalents in another, also known as a lexicon.[1]According to Nielsen (2008) a dictionary may be regarded as a lexicographical product that is characterised by three significant features: (1) it has been prepared for one or more functions; (2) it contains data that have been selected for the purpose of fulfilling those functions; and (3) its lexicographic structures link and establish relationships between the data so that they can meet the needs of users and fulfill the functions of the dictionary.


A thesaurus

In general usage, a thesaurus is a reference work that lists words grouped together according to similarity of meaning (containing synonyms and sometimes antonyms), in contrast to a dictionary, which provides definitions for words, and generally lists them in alphabetical order. The main purpose of such reference works is to help the user “to find the word, or words, by which [an] idea may be most fitly and aptly expressed” – to quote Peter Mark Roget, architect of the best known thesaurus in the English language.[1]


Different types of thesaurus

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An Atlas

An atlas is a collection of maps; it is typically a map of Earth or a region of Earth, but there are atlases of the other planets (and their satellites) in the Solar System. Furthermore atlases of anatomy exist, mapping out the human body or other organisms.[citation needed]Atlases have traditionally been bound into book form, but today many atlases are in multimedia formats. In addition to presenting geographic features and political boundaries, many atlases often feature geopolitical, social, religious and economic statistics. They also have information about the map and places in it.


An Encyclopedia

An encyclopedia (also spelledencyclopaedia or encyclopædia)[1] is a type of reference work – a compendiumholding a summary of information from either all branches of knowledge or a particular branch of knowledge.[2] Encyclopedias are divided into articles or entries, which are usually accessed alphabetically by article name.[3] Encyclopedia entries are longer and more detailed than those in mostdictionaries.[3] Generally speaking, unlike dictionary entries, which focus on linguisticinformation about words, encyclopedia articles focus on factual information to cover the thing or concept for which the article name stands.[4][5][6][7]


An Almanac

An almanac (also archaically spelled almanack andalmanach) is an annual publication that includes information such as weather forecasts, farmers' planting dates, tide tables, and tabular information often arranged according to the calendar.Astronomical data and various statistics are found in almanacs, such as the times of the rising and setting of the sun and moon, eclipses, hours of full tide, stated festivals of churches, and so on.