- Paperback: 544 pages
- Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 3 edition (August 11, 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0844202746
- ISBN-13: 978-0844202747
- Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1.3 x 8.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,207,471 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
NTC's American Idioms Dictionary 3rd Edition
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) is a service we offer sellers that lets them store their products in Amazon's fulfillment centers, and we directly pack, ship, and provide customer service for these products. Something we hope you'll especially enjoy: FBA items qualify for FREE Shipping and Amazon Prime.
If you're a seller, Fulfillment by Amazon can help you increase your sales. We invite you to learn more about Fulfillment by Amazon .
There is a newer edition of this item:
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
About the Author
Richard A. Spears, Ph.D., is a reference editor and former linguistics professor who has written more than 30 dictionaries, including NTC's American Idioms Dictionary (ISBN: 0-8442-0273-8) and NTC's American English Learner's Dictionary (ISBN: 0-8442-5859-8).
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
NTC's American Idioms Dictionary is designed for easy use by life-long speakers of English, as well as the new-to-English speaker or learner. An appendix includes 500 irreversible binomial and trinomial phrases. The dictionary contains a unique Phrase-Finder Index that allows the user to identify and look up any expression in the dictionary from a single key word.
This is a dictionary of form and meaning. It focuses on the user's need to know the meaning, usage, and appropriate contexts for each idiomatic phrase. The definitions and examples provide sufficient information to allow a person trained in English grammar to parse the idiomatic expressions. Persons who do not understand English grammar or English grammar terminology and who cannot themselves parse the idiomatic expressions or example sentences do not derive much benefit from grammatical explanations. The dictionary relies on clarity, simplicity, and carefully written examples to lead the user to the meaning and appropriate usage of each idiomatic expression.
The special features that make this book useful for learners do not detract from or interfere with its usefulness for the life-long English speaker, and should, in fact, add to its usefulness. Specialized knowledge of English lexical and sentential semantics and English grammar is not used in indexing, defining, or explaining the idiomatic expressions.
Idioms or idiomatic expressions are often defined as "set phrases" or "fixed phrases." The number of idiomatic expressions that are totally invariant is really quite small, however, even when the English proverbs are included in this category. Most such phrases can vary the choice of noun or pronoun and most select from a wide variety of verb tense and aspect patterns. Adjectives and some adverbs can be added at will to idiomatic phrases. Furthermore, the new-to-English user is faced with the difficulty of isolating an idiomatic expression from the rest of the sentence and determining where to find it in a dictionary of idioms. If the user fails to extract the essential idiomatic expression, the likelihood of finding it in any dictionary is reduced considerably.
In dictionaries that list each idiomatic expression under a "key word," there may be some difficulty in deciding what the "key word" is. In phrases such as on the button or in the cards, the key word, the only noun in the phrase, is easy to determine if one has correctly isolated the phrase from the sentence in which it was found. In phrases that have more than one noun, such as all hours of the day and night or A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, deciding on a "key word" may be more difficult. It is even more difficult when the only noun in the phrase is one of the variable words, such as with go around with her old friends, go around with Jim, go around with no one at all, which are examples of go around with someone.
Another important feature for the learner is the use of object placeholders indicating human and nonhuman. Typical dictionary entries for idiomatic phrases-especially for phrasal verbs, prepositional verbs, and phrasal prepositional verbs-omit direct objects, as in put on hold; bail out, or see through. This dictionary uses the stand-in pronouns someone and something to indicate whether the verb in the phrase calls for an object, where the object should go in the sentence, whether the object can be human or nonhuman, and if there are different meanings dependent on whether the object is human or nonhuman. All of that information is vital to learners of English, although it seems to come perfectly naturally to life-long English speakers. For example, there is a big difference between put someone on hold and put something on hold, or between bail someone out and bail something out. There is also a great difference between see something through and see through something. These differences may never be revealed if the entry heads are just put on hold, bail out, and see through, with no object indicated.
Many idioms have optional parts. In fact, a phrase may seem opaque simply because it is really just an ellipsis of a longer, less opaque phrase. This dictionary shows as full a form of an idiom as possible with the frequently omitted parts in parentheses. For example: back down (from someone or something) and be all eyes (and ears).
The dictionary includes numerous irreversible binomials and trinomials-sequences of 2 or 3 words that are in a fixed order, such as fast and furious, but not furious and fast. These sequences are listed in the Appendix, and those that require explanation are cross-referenced to entries in the dictionary.