Main Dictionary

Word Search in the Main Dictionary

Let's look at a typical Advanced Search in WordDiscovery's Main Dictionary. This is a simple search for words that have the term 'emotion' in their definition. Note that search fields are divided into two sections. The upper section we call Definitive Fields and the lower section is Qualitative Fields. Each search field has a drop down which determines the equation for the search such as Equal, Contains, Starts With, and Ends With. The Definitive Search Fields let you set exact criteria such as characters contained in the Word, terms in the Definition, Sounds, Length or the word, etc. Qualitative Fields are subjective. For example, you can search for words which have Good implications (common parlance, not necessarily the opinion of WordDiscovery).

To initiate the search we click on the Advanced Search button and enter our search term. Here we are searching for words about 'emotion'.

Here is a page of the results.

There are about 800 results where words have 'emotion' in their definition (see count at bottom right of screen). Your search term is highlighted in yellow and below the result count is your search criteria. There are many options we can take at this point including Adding and Rearranging Columns, clicking the Spyglass to view the Detail, Sorting, Refining our Search, viewing Related Records (e.g., Synonyms), Viewing Complements, viewing an Extended Definition, viewing the Wiktionary entry for a word, viewing words in the same Class, viewing Links (other semantically related words), viewing Rhymes, and clicking the word to view graphs of its relationships.

Let's first refine our search. We click Advanced Search again and this time we'll look at Qualitative Fields.

We've refined our search for words with 'emotion' in their definition and also where Good/Bad is not empty. This means that the words must also have a value in the Good/Bad field and that the word commonly has Good or Bad implications. The possible values are Good, Bad, Other, and Neither. We could have specified specifically just one of these values also. Let's click Advanced Search again to perform the search and view the results. (Note: Use the horizontal scroll bar at the bottom of the image to see all fields of the grid).

Now we have 128 words whose Definition contains 'emotion' and Good/Bad is not empty. Values for Good/Bad and other Qualitative fields are subjective and based on conventional parlance and are not necessarily the opinion of WordDiscovery.

Now, we have a lot of options for further discovery. Let's first look at Complements for 'afraid'. These will be words which enhance, clarify, or activate 'afraid'. We click the Complements icon on the row for 'afraid'. Here are our results.

We get 141 Complements for 'afraid'. Again, we have a lot of options for each Complement. We can view Related Words (e.g., synonyms), an Extended Definition, the Wiktionary entry for the Complement, Graphs of the Complement's relationships, and Rhymes. With Advanced Search, we can narrow the list to Complements which Sound like we want, have a length we want, and many other criteria like the previous search screens we've shown.

For fun, let's back up by pressing the Exit button twice and again view all the words with 'emotion' in their definition.

Let's look at a Graph of the word 'abandon' by clicking on it. The graph displays in an iframe (embedded component) below the word list.

Graphs have many options including:

  • Displaying multiple pages of results. See the drop down with number 1. To make graphs easy, we limit the relationships on a page. So you click the down arrow to see other pages.
  • Displaying breadcrumbs to enable forward and backward navigation of the graph. See the word 'abandon' in blue below the selections bar. Clicking a breadcrumb displays the graph related to the breadcrumb.
  • Interactivity. If you click a word in the graph, its relationships are displayed and the breadcrumbs advance.
  • Displaying definitions. If you hover your pointer over the @ sign (branch locus) the definition common to that branch will display.
  • Displaying in Circles, Dots, or Rectangles. Currently we are displaying Related Words in Rectangles.
  • Displaying or removing related Nouns, Verbs, Adverbs, or Adjectives if they exist.
  • Displaying various word relationships. Here we just have Hypernyms and so we've checked the box to display them. There are several other possible relationships to display.
  • Entering a word in the Search box will advance the graph to that word's relationships.

Here's the word 'good' in its graph. Note that there are 2 colors of boxes (green and cinnamon). Words in the green boxes are nouns of good while words in the cinnamon boxes are adjectives of good. These colors match the colors in the Selection Bar. You can control display of words of a type by checking/unchecking their check box.


In summary, the Main Dictionary/Advanced Search provides:

  • Powerful search using Definitive and Qualitative Criteria
  • Easy search specification using using drop-down selections
  • Complements of words
  • Graphical display of word relationships
  • and much more