17 April 2008

Booking Through Thursday: Vocabulary

Suggested by Nithin:

I’ve always wondered what other people do when they come across a word/phrase that they’ve never heard before. I mean, do they jot it down on paper so they can look it up later, or do they stop reading to look it up on the dictionary/google it or do they just continue reading and forget about the word?

I was in the habit of writing down unfamiliar words, usually on the back of library checkout slips; but the end result was a backlog of words that I’d never gotten round to looking up. So now I keep reading and either forget all about it, or look it up later. The dictionary is my reference of choice, but I like Google for words in historical novels that sound like they have more information to be discovered than a dictionary entry would contain.

But most of the time, I’m pretty lazy when it comes to new words: I try to infer meaning from context and read on.

5 comments:

Lisa said...

If I'm near a dictionary or a computer, I'll look it up right away. Otherwise, I write it down to look up later. I got this trait from my Dad. He's 72, and anytime someone has a question about a word, phrase, definition or anything else, he immediately looks it up.

Alix said...

I'm the opposite I like to know so I usually turn down the page and come back!

I love your header.

Rhinoa said...

Yep I am pretty lazy as well and don't bother to look words up. I might ask someone I know if they are in the room when I come across them, but other than that I pretty much ignore it and keep going...

Chris said...

I use Google sometimes too.

Table Talk said...

I think this question is showing up my age; it has just never occurred to me to use the internet rather than a dictionary.

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Header image shows detail of A Young Girl Reading by Jean-Honoré Fragonard, c. 1776