The OxfordWords Text Analyser

Our lexicographers rely on extensive language research to create our dictionaries. As part of this work, computational linguistics is employed to analyse the 2-billion-word Oxford English Corpus. This helps us to discover the contexts in which a word is used and the frequency with which it is used, amongst other things. From the findings, we can draw conclusions about how the language works, what words mean, and how the English language is evolving.

We’d like to show you some of the techniques used to get inside the language. To that end we have created this tool, a concordance analyser of classic English texts from the Oxford World’s Classics series. This text analysis tool is inspired by our work with the Oxford English Corpus and uses some similar techniques.

You can use the text analyser to:

  • explore a text word-by-word, looking at collocates (i.e. those words most often appearing alongside a given word)
  • see example sentences from the text
  • examine how frequently the word is used throughout the text.

We hope through this tool you will see familiar texts in a new light, and discover something about the computational analysis of language.

Click on an author or series below to get started.