Logos Multilingual Portal

14 - The Logos Dictionary

"It may be imagined that a good part of the intermediate work in dream-formation, which seeks to reduce the separate dream-thoughts to the tersest and most unified expression in the dream, is effected in this manner, by fitting paraphrases of the various thoughts"1

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This is the search grid of the Logos dictionary. Starting from the upper left, the "change layout" option recalls the grid to register as a user of the Logos portal and gives the opportunity to modify one's personal data. If for example I change my profile and indicate "Italian" as a "preferred language" for my queries with the dictionary, I have the opportunity to consult the same search grid in Italian. If I click on the second option, "professional", and I insert my username and password (i.e. I do what is called, in jargon, "login"), the "guest user" words top right disappear and are substituted with my name. From this time on what I do in the dictionary is subject to the authorizations connected with my registration. If for example I am registered as a user authorized to check and insert words in the English-Italian combination, after login I can click on "guest work", check the recently inserted words that are not yet confirmed. I get this grid:


Bruno Osimo

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Number of Words: 6055 


Click on the word and check if it's correct, then return into window and click on Remove to delete the word from the list.

By clicking on "search" I get a long list of words, all inserted in the past few days or hours, preceded by an asterisk and followed by two question marks: this means that they were proposed as translations for these words and weren't yet confirmed by an expert user. I find, for example, "*floating point??", I click on the word, I click on "C" (meaning "change"), I click on "language" and indicate "Italian", I write in the space "virgola mobile", and then the new entry appears in the dictionary: from now on whoever searches for "virgola mobile" can find the English translation, "floating point", and viceversa.

Moreover, on the main grid you find the "help" option that refers to another page containing explanations on the use of the dictionary.

Below, at the line where "word" is written, we enter the part of the dictionary which can be used by users, not only co-authors. Here you can insert a word to be searched, and it is possible to do so even if you don't know the language in which such words is expressed: it is necessary in the field "from:" not to insert any language, and choose instead the option "all languages". Let us see what happens. I insert the word "meta" with the "all languages" option and I get:

Query word: meta


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meta  -  Form of the verb meter

The seven results can concern the same entry translated into many languages or seven different entries. To know, I click on the first one, the Spanish word: it refers to four different meanings in four different contexts: the first one refers to the sport term, "arrival line", and offers also the translation into Valencian that is a homograph. The second is the Greek-origin prefix, as in the word "metatext". The third is the proper geographic name of a river in Latin America. The fourth is the astronomical geography term meaning "the highest point reached by any given object in the sky".

If I go back to the first page of results of the "meta" query and click on Italian now, I get four distinct entries: the first, in athletics, concerns a "goal" made in some sports, like football, the second "destination", the third is the word "metà" (accents are not distinctive for the search engine so as to facilitate the search of people unsure of the accents, who use the acute instead of the grave accent or add or omit it). The first two entries are given as normal entries, while the third one is indicated as a synonym of "destination", and the fourth as an error of "metà". i.e. the reference is to the correct entry with tonic accent.

Going back to the first results and clicking on "Latin", I get four more results: some of those we already found in other languages plus the Latin term signifying the geometric solid "cone". In Portuguese we discover that it means "goal" in soccer jargon, and the last indication is that in Spanish it is a form of the verb "meter". If we click on the latter, we are given the opportunity to click on "show conjugation": if we do, we connect to the Logos Universal Conjugator that presents us the full paradigm of the verb "meter".

The universal conjugator (http://www.logosconjugator.org) is another important element of the Logos portal allowing to go back to any paradigm of a verb by stating any of its forms.

From this search we saw that the input of the simple string "meta" has led us to discover many meanings in many languages. The work of experienced translators who already know the language in which a word is expressed and those merely searching for a translation is different. Let us suppose that I'm looking for all the possible translatants of the Italian word "capsula". In this case on the main search grid of the dictionary I click on "all matches": In this way I search not only the word "capsula", but also the entries that have a partial match with that string. I get all these results:

accesso alla capsula spaziale 527


Amalgama in capsula 61




capsula (di chiusura) 688

capsula 0

capsula 0

capsula 00

capsula 3912

capsula 581

capsula 61

capsula 61

capsula 61

capsula 6101

capsula 6311

capsula 681

capsula 686

capsula 688

capsula a diaframma  

capsula a diaframma 6

capsula a membrana (per carburatore 531

capsula a vite  

capsula a vite 688

capsula adattatore, modulo adattatore, adattatore

capsula adattatore, modulo adattatore, adattatore 629

Capsula articulare 61

capsula barometrica (per carburatori di motori 531

capsula barometrica, capsula aneroide 53

capsula barometrica, capsula aneroide 53

capsula bianca 641

capsula da laboratorio  

capsula del corrente di quota (del carburatore 531

capsula del cristallino 00

capsula del cristallino 61

capsula del cristallino 6101

capsula del motore 621001

capsula della valvola 531

capsula dentale 61

capsula di adattamento 6781

capsula di bottiglia 0

capsula di Bowman 61

capsula di chiusura 688

capsula di chiusura 688

capsula di copertura 681

capsula di gelatina 61

capsula di immersione 0

capsula di misura volumetrica costituita da un contatore volumetrico a secco integrale monogetto  

capsula di protezione 681

capsula di prova per valvola limitatrice della pressione 6311

capsula di Tenone 61

capsula di Tenone 6101

capsula di tessuto connettivo

capsula di tessuto connettivo 6815

capsula dinamometrica

capsula dinamometrica 388

capsula manometrica

capsula manometrica 53

capsula manometrica 531

capsula manometrica 537

capsula manometrica cambio automatico 531

capsula manometrica oppure avvolgimento primario 531

capsula metallica (di barometro aneroide 53

capsula microfonica 384

capsula per calcinazione 54

capsula per evaporazione 53

capsula per penna 681

capsula prefilettata 641

capsula pulpare 61

capsula ricevente

capsula ricevente 384

capsula ricevente 384

capsula spaziale  

capsula tronco conica  

guida baga ingresso capsula 688

pistone di fermo capsula 641

presa della capsula 641

supporto capsula 531

treto o capsula poricida 6631

As you see, a really astonishing number of translatants referring to different technical areas; the number following every lemma indicates the related sector to indicate a given translatant, to avoid confusion between the meaning of the term in one area and the meaning it has in other contexts.

Every translatant can have many synonyms and is accompanied by a definition. When you have the page containing the many translatants in the various languages, you can also access their context (not the artificial context of dictionary, the natural context of writers and speakers). If you click on one of the translatants, you are automatically sent to their context within the Logos Library (on which you can consult the 9 and 10 units of this part of the course).


Bibliographical references

FREUD SIGMUND, L'interpretazione dei sogni, in Opere, vol. 3, Torino, Boringhieri, a cura di C. L. Musatti, 1966.

FREUD SIGMUND, The Interpretation Of Dreams, translated by A. A. Brill, London, G. Allen & company, 1913.

Logos Dictionary, available in the world wide web, http://www.logosdictionary.org, consulted 15 March 2004.

1 Freud 1900: 308.