A Brief Historical Overview of Pronunciations of English in Dictionaries

Jack Windsor Lewis, Inger Mees

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The evolution of pronunciations in mainly British English dictionaries is traced from their beginnings, with accounts of certain neglected figures in the field. In the paper we discuss how representations of pronunciations have developed from being indicated by means of conventional spelling with the addition of marks and numbers to more sophisticated systems of phonetic notation. A significant feature of the twenty-first century is the addition of spoken pronunciations of the items.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)343-356
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Pronunciation lexicography
  • Pronunciations of British English
  • Phonetic notation
  • International phonetic alphabet
  • History of pronunciation dictionaries

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