Dictionary.com Word FAQs
There are different labels in dictionaries, such as: status, regional, grammatical, semantic, subject, etc. How can I understand them and use them?
There are many labels in dictionaries and each of the features within dictionary entries can employ labels. It is very important to read the Explanatory Notes or Guide to the dictionary, which is where the labels will be explained. The most common labels in dictionaries are for part of speech, usage, and field/subject. Part-of-speech labels may vary, but generally are: n, v, vt, vi, adj, adv, prep, conj, pron, interj, pl n, sing n, v aux, definite article, indefinite article. For the different uses of language, there are usage labels - which vary quite a bit from dictionary to dictionary - but may include: slang, informal, obs/obsolete, rare, historical, literary, dial/dialect, Brit/British, vulgar. These labels tell special information about how and where a word may be used. Field or subject labels are used for meanings from specialized fields of knowledge or activity, such as Billiards, Bridge, Computing, Golf, Military, Music, Nautical, etc.