How to Use the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) via Hill Library's Online Databases


1. You must have a current and working Unity or Eos computer account to access the OED or any of the other very useful databases provided to you by the library.  If you don't have a Unity account and want one, or need your account updated, go to this site: http://www.ncsu.edu/it/essentials/your_unity_account/get_started.html

Once you have a Unity or Eos account follow this procedure.  First go the the library home page:
http://www.lib.ncsu.edu

Then select Databases under Search the Collection 

Then select "O," from the Alphabet List

Then select "Oxford English Dictionary" 

You will then, unless already logged in on a campus computer, be prompted to login to a secure server.

Under Affiliation Status choose NC State Unversity

The screen will ask you to fill in your unity user id (the part of your email before the @ sign), and then your password.
For type of cookie, choose One Hour Any Address

When you get to the OED home page, select Enter OED online

3. Looking up Words in The Oxford English Dictionary

Enter your word in the Find Word box, top right.   Press "search" to get the definition.

For any word, the word is defined in black, but the examples of how the word has been used by real writers over the past 8 centuries are found via the Quotations button.  If you want to see a graph of when a certain meaning was most used, try the Date Chart option. These two features make this the premiere research dictionary for British literature.

An example of an OED definition entry:

fulsome, a
6. Offensive to normal tastes or sensibilities; exciting aversion or repugnance; disgusting, repulsive, odious. ? Obs. exc. as in sense 7.
 
  c1375 Sc. Leg. Saints, Julian 496 Of his wykytnes {Th}at fulsume til al gud-men wes. ?a1400 Morte Arth. 1061 There thow lygges, ffor the fulsomeste freke that fourmede was euere! 1532 MORE Confut. Tindale Wks. 713/2 Tindall..with hys fulsome feeling fayth. 1579 TOMSON Calvin's Serm. Tim. 464/2 It is a foule and fulsome thing, whiche shee must leaue off. 1611 COTGR. s.v. Robin, A filthie knaue with a fulsome queane. 1635 QUARLES Embl. III. ii. (1718) 133 Seest thou this fulsom ideot? c1645 HOWELL Lett. (1650) I. 188 A phlegmatic dull wife is fulsome and fastidious. 1680 OTWAY Orphan I. i. (1691) 3 Now half the Youth of Europe are in Arms, How fulsome must it be to stay behind, And dye of rank diseases here at home? 1684 SIR C. SCROPE Misc. Poems 112 Let not his fulsome armes embrace your waste. 1702 POPE Wife of Bath 173 Fulsom love for gain we can endure. 1780 COWPER Progr. Err. 291 And lest the fulsome artifice should fail, Themselves will hide its coarseness with a veil. 1819 W. TENNANT Papistry Storm'd (1827) 29 Have at a fousome kirk, and batter Her lustfu' banes untill they clatter! 1826 SCOTT Woodst. iii, In a booth at the fulsome fair.

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