What do bill, gnomon, and bowsprit have in common? When was dinner first used, and what did people say before?
The Historical Thesaurus is a way to explore the words used for a particular concept or meaning over time. It groups senses and words in the OED according to their subject, and orders them by date of first use. Read more about the Historical Thesaurus here.
Articles on the Historical Thesaurus
- What is the Historical Thesaurus of the OED? by Christian Kay, professor emeritus of Glasgow University, and editor of the thesaurus
- How to use the Historical Thesaurus of the OED by Christian Kay and Marc Alexander
- Men, women, and children in the Historical Thesaurus: a case study by Marc Alexander and Kate Wild
More guides and information about the OED
Not a subscriber? How you can obtain access to OED
Faculty, Professionals, and Students
Fill out a library recommendation form to ensure institution-wide access.
Subscriptions and 30-day free-trials are available to institutions for all of our resources. Please contact us for additional information.
Customers outside North & South America
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone: +44 (0) 1865 353705 Fax: +44 (0) 1865 353659
Customers in North & South America
Email: email@example.com Telephone: 1-800-624-0153 Fax: 1-919-677-8877
See How to subscribe for more information