Who Wrote The First English Dictionary?


3 Answers

Will Martin Profile
Will Martin answered
Although there were lists of difficult words, English had no dictionary in the modern sense until Dr Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language was published in 1755. It took over nine years to complete, and in addition Johnson needed six assistants working full-time. He produced definitions for over 40,000 words, using at least 114,000 quotations to illustrate them. Some definitions are incorrect ("Ignorance, madam, pure ignorance," he retorted when a lady asked why he had wrongly defined a part of the horse.) Others are clearly written for his own amusement (he defines a lexicographer, his own profession, as "a harmless drudge" and a patron (having failed to get one for himself) as "a wretch who supports with insolence, and is paid in flattery.") But despite these eccentricities, Johnson's dictionary is a mammoth feat, showing both the depth of his learning and his powers of endurance. The dictionary went through five editions in the author's lifetime and remained the standard work until the first part of the Oxford English Dictionary appeared in 1884.
Raven Riley Profile
Raven Riley answered
By Raven Riley, (my site is

Damien Cartwright, I think, wrote the first dictionary.

Get more information on!
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
The first dictionary was invented by Henry Cockerman in 1623, but he only put "hard" words in it. He thought that it didn't need to have words that people already knew. John Kelsey modernized the dictionary so it had "everyday" words.

Answer Question