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Romanian/English-English/Romanian Standard Dictionary (Hippocrene Standard Dictionary) Paperback – September 1, 1996

ISBN-13: 978-0781804448 ISBN-10: 0781804442

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Product Details

  • Series: Hippocrene Standard Dictionary
  • Paperback: 567 pages
  • Publisher: Hippocrene Books (September 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0781804442
  • ISBN-13: 978-0781804448
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 4.2 x 7.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #935,463 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: Romanian, English

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Customer Reviews

2.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on May 16, 2001
Format: Paperback
See my other review of the NTC edition of Andrei Bantas' dictionary for a more detailed explanation of the substandard situation in Romanian-English dictionaries, and why you're better off buying a better (if still substandard) dictionary in Romania than in the US.
The Miroiu dictionary has fewer words than the NTC edition of Bantas, but unlike the latter, it is paperback, smaller, and thus more portable, which is why I also gave it two stars (though it really deserved 1.5). Both, however, lack any meaningful grammatical information beyond the gender of nouns (no verb conjugations, no plurals, no genitive case mutations, no adjective forms, no participle mutations, etc.). Both have short and not infrequently dubious translations with few synonyms, and both have a lousy printing/typeface. (If you're wondering, I've studied Romanian since 1993--in spite of the frustrating dictionary situation--and speak and read it very well despite being a non-native political scientist. :-).
Bottom line: you'll have to buy marginally better foreign language dictionaries in Romania, and learn the language off two or three of them, until someone writes a Romanian-English dictionary worth the name. Such dictionary gems exist in other Balkan languages, so why not Romanian?? Mai ales daca romanii vor sa-i invete pe strainii (ca mine) mai bine despre Romania si cultura romaneasca?!
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Romanian Translator (jbogdan@gte.net) on June 25, 1999
Format: Paperback
In my work as a translator I am always using my dictionary as a reference tool. Although this one is fairly new, it lacks a lot of the depth needed to truly understand a word or concept beyond extremely general words. The set up used by Oxford-Hachette with their French and Spanish dictionaries would be much more convenient (i.e. the addition of commonly used phrases and concept explanations) for anyone looking at this book. Unfortuantely, because Romanian is not one of the more popular languages out there, the amount of good reference material is quite limited.
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By cropqueen@iol10.com on March 30, 1999
Format: Paperback
This paperback book is a convenient size to carry. It includes pronunciation guide in the front for both English and Romanian readers which is very helpful. I just wish it included more words. There have been several words I've tried to look up that I've been unable to find.
I've only seen two Romanian-English English-Romanian dictionaries and this is the better of the two. But I do not think the value is as good with this book as with the other Romanian study books I've purchased. Still, if you need a Romanian-English dictionary, you will find this helpful.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Culver TOP 1000 REVIEWER on October 19, 2006
Format: Paperback
Hippocrene's ROMANIAN-ENGLISH ENGLISH-ROMANIAN DICTIONARY, compiled by Mihai Miroiu is another shoddy offering from a company whose dictionaries are among the worst in the English-speaking world. All the downsides of a Hippocrene dictionary are here. The typesetting is poor, it was seemingly done in a word-processor and uses ugly standard computer fonts (and a conspicuous lack of italics), and to boot a good inch of the bottom of each page before the page number is empty. The dictionary is a simple one-to-one translation of each word, there's no definition of words when they occur in idiomatic contexts. And for a dictionary with so few definitions, it is seized too large for the pocket and is overpriced.

Then there's some dictionary-specific quirks. Though Miroiu's dictionary was first published in 1996, it uses the pre-1993 (Communist-era) orthography that has long been abandoned by the Romanian public. Of course, anyone who works with Romanian will eventually read texts using the old orthography, but it's important for students to know about the various systems, and Miroiu doesn't even mention the existence of a new orthography. And though Hippocrene is an American publisher, the pronunciation of English words is given according to the Received Pronunciation, not General American.

If you are an English-speaker learning Romanian, you'll need to obtain a dictionary from a Romanian publisher, since there's nothing too grand from English-language presses. Try the Theora dictionaries, which are much more useful and polished. There are also so-called "orthographical dictionaries" which are vital for students, as while they don't contain definitions, they show the formation of the genitive and the plural for nouns and the conjugation patterns of verbs. Hippocrene is a publisher that usually disappoints, and this dictionary is no exception.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By C. Naor on August 23, 2004
Format: Paperback
If your command of either one of thesse languages is above second grade do not bother to buy or even borrow this dictionary. It seems as if the author glanced quickly over the Andrei Bantas dictionary (the real one to be treasured) and put overnight a real cheap and dim paperback.
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24 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 3, 2001
Format: Paperback
Joe,
There was an orthographic change in Romanian made by the Romanian Academy, I believe in the early 1990s, reverting to a system used before the communist takeover, if I'm not mistaken.
The short answer is that "a" with the circumflex (^) over it is exactly the same letter/sound as "i" with the circumflex over it. (I don't have Miroiu's dictionary in front of me, but I'm guessing it uses the latter. Many communist-era texts, and some written by communist-educated emigres--not to mention some pre-20th century writings--do likewise.)
For example, the word for "bread" will look like (as best an ASCII keyboard permits) "pa^ine" as well as "pi^ine". The change to "a^" does not affect the first letter of words that start with "i^", as in the word "i^nta^lnire / i^nti^lnire" or the preposition "i^n". The "a^" is now the orthographic rule taught in schools.
As you learn Romanian, you'll get used to reading both, because you'll probably end up reading material from different historical periods. Basically, the shifts back and forth have to do with an enduring and rather politicized geographic-cultural debate over Romania's relationship to Latin, Rome and the West in general versus Slavic influences and the East.
Frank
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