How to use this dictionary:
interpreting dictionary definitions

When you look up a word, you'll generally get one or more definitions in the following format. See below for a fuller description of the different parts:

Example dictionary definition with exaplanation
Headword and category
The headword gives the basic form of the word. So if you look up a plural, then the singular will generally be listed as the headword. The lexical category (noun, adjective, pronoun) etc is intended to help you confirm that you've got the right definition. It's not a strict theoretical statement about the status of that word.
Explanation of sub-meaning
The entries for many words are split into "shades of meaning". Each shade of meaning is introduced by a letter: (a), (b) etc. In many cases, a brief summary of this shade of meaning is then given in bracketed italics. Again, this is to help you locate the relevant part of the entry.
Most typical translation
At the beginning of the entry, following any explanation, is the typical translation or list of typical translations for that shade of meaning. Sometimes the actual translation in some specific circumstance may differ, and this is generally indicated by way of examples later in the entry.
Example with translation
To help you find an idiomatic translation, example phrases with translations are often provided. Translations of compounds are also provided where they have a fairly "fixed" translation. For example, if you look up cafe (coffee), you'll find the translation for cafe descafeinado (decaffeinated coffee, decaf).
Pop-up explanations
Where you see a question mark with a blue background, you can click for more information. A pop-up window will appear giving a short grammar article or explanation of a tricky example. In this example, clicking on the question mark will give you an explanation of why (among other things) the word me appears before the verb.

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