Wishlist - a collocation finder
Thread poster: neilmac

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:51
Spanish to English
+ ...
Dec 25, 2011

I am looking for a website, search engine or program that provides common collocations, such as verb + preposition, etc. and haven't been able to find one yet.

For example, take the verb "incorporate" - if the user wants to know what the possible options are (incorporate TO / WITH/INTO.. etc), ideally they would enter the main verb and a list would come up with the possible options, preferably with usage examples for each one. I think it would be useful for students, translators, proofers and editors. Perhaps there already is something similar and I just don't know where to find it, so any input would be appreciated.


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Ahmad Hafeez  Identity Verified
Saudi Arabia
Local time: 19:51
Member (2009)
English to Arabic
+ ...
Oxford Collocations Dictionary for Students of English Dec 25, 2011

This link may be useful for you

http://5yiso.appspot.com/

Regards


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Doron Greenspan MITI  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 19:51
Member (2005)
English to Hebrew
+ ...
Just an alternative idea Dec 25, 2011

You may try this excellent book instead. It has been very helpful ever since my translation studies.

http://www.amazon.com/Bbi-Dictionary-English-Word-Combinations/dp/1556195214

I know it's not online, but it's the best, and I can do with getting up from my desk every once in a while to have a look for something...

Doron

[Edited at 2011-12-25 15:16 GMT]


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Noni Gilbert
Spain
Local time: 18:51
Member (2007)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Ahmad's link Dec 25, 2011

Looks v interesting. But my first attempt made me raise an eyebrow. According to the page, "fabulous" does not exist as a word, so the collocation "absolutely fabulous" doesn't come up. I wonder what Patsy and Eddie will have to say about that!

If this were fed into automatic translators, it might improve their style immensely.

Anyway, thanks Ahmad - this is going straight into my favourites.

And happy hunting, Neil.

Festive greetings to all.

Noni


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Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:51
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Agree with Noni Dec 25, 2011

For the words it includes, it is very useful. But the omissions are surprising. Not only doesn't it include "fabulous", it doesn't include "absolutely" either, which would be even more dismaying for Patsy and Edina. I also found several other quite common words to be missing.

[Edited at 2011-12-26 07:03 GMT]


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The Misha
Local time: 12:51
Russian to English
+ ...
The BBI Combinatory Dictionary of English Dec 25, 2011

I have been using a Russian reprint of this 1986 dictionary forever, to the point that it is now virtually falling apart. Someone told me it now exists in an electronic format as well, but me and my old gal are doing just fine. However, these days you don't even need it much. Just think of your options and google them to see what pops up. That's what I do anyway. Personally, I find a good thesaurus (such as thesaurus.com) much more useful - and truly indispensable when writing original copy.

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Noni Gilbert
Spain
Local time: 18:51
Member (2007)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Odd Dec 25, 2011

As Jack says, absolutely is a "no such word", but if you put fantastic in, then it appears as a suggested collocation. Looks like the app needs some work...

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GerSi  Identity Verified
Slovenia
Local time: 18:51
Member (2010)
German to Slovenian
+ ...
a fabulous one Dec 25, 2011

Hi all,

you might try linguee. It is a bit tricky with prepositions, however, at least the most common ones can be found. And it includes "absolutely fabulous" .

It's not as reliable as printed dictionaries but it provides good ideas that you can then check elsewhere.

Happy holidays!


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:51
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
The good, the bad and the ugly Dec 25, 2011

The Misha wrote:
Just think of your options and google them to see what pops up. That's what I do anyway.


I don't know. You'll get the good combinations by Googling, but you'll get an awful lot of rubbish, too. Often written by people who could have done with exactly what Neilmac is looking for.

As an EFL trainer, I back your request for a good collocations reference, Neilmac. Why don't the principal ones, at least, go into dictionaries? There are very few occasions when a dictionary will give you that sort of help.

Sheila


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tftrad  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:51
Russian to Italian
+ ...
A useful link Dec 26, 2011

Another useful link for English collocations and context
http://www.netspeak.eu/
Teresa


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Krzysztof Łesyk  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 01:51
Japanese to English
+ ...
English Corpora Dec 26, 2011

While it's not a perfect solution by any means, you can use English corpora to search for collocations. The Corpus of Contemporary American English (http://corpus.byu.edu/coca/ ) and British National Corpus (http://corpus.byu.edu/bnc/ ) are both available free of charge (they do require free registration after you've used them a couple of times) and have pretty robust search options: wildcards, grammatical categories, and so on. You also get examples of collocations you search for - not full sentences, but enough to confirm the usage and context.

Hope this helps - I've been using both of these sites for a while and they've been very helpful.


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Andrei Yefimov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 19:51
English to Russian
+ ...
Oxford Collocations Dictionary for Linvgox3 Dec 27, 2011

And yes, with all the words missing in this one: http://5yiso.appspot.com/

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:51
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for all the links Dec 29, 2011

Although most are curate's eggs. Especially Linguee, which apart from some classic howlers, I find wanting in terms of style or appropriacy. The search continues...

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