Table Alphabeticall

From Academic Kids

A Table Alphabeticall is the abbreviated title of the first monolingual dictionary in the English language, created by Robert Cawdrey in 1604. Its full title is "A Table Alphabeticall, Conteyning and Teaching the True Writing and Understanding of Hard Words, Borrowed from the Hebrew, Greek, Latin or French, &c."

Although the work is important in being the first collection of its kind, it was never deemed a particularly useful work. At only 120 pages, it listed 3,000 words along with very brief (often single-word) definitions. Its claimed purpose was "for the benefit and helpe of Ladies, Gentlewomen, or other unskillful persons". The words chosen were quite arbitrary and often obscure. Within a few decades, many other English dictionaries followed.

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