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This book is designed for use in connection with Basic English, The ABC of Basic English, Basic Step by Step, Basic by Examples, and The Basic Dictionary. A list of books on Basic is printed at the end, so that the reader may make a selection of those which will be of use to him for his special purposes.
The purpose of The Basic Words is to give an idea of the way in which the 850 words may be used. In The Basic Dictionary suggestions are offered for putting the 7,500 commonest words of normal English into Basic; and there, the 850 themselves are in their places with no details. Here, on the other hand, only the 850 Basic forms are given--together with such international words and names as are given in Basic English and the ABC. In addition, a selection of complex words (formed by putting Basic words together), forms of comparison which are not regular, and words based on sound-effects, are listed an their senses are given where necessary
It is, further, made clear which words may take un- at the front or -er, -ing, -ed at the end; but the special forms for more than one, and the rule for the addition of -ly to the names of qualities, which are given in The ABC, pp. 10 and 40, are not pointed out again in this book.
The -er, -ing, and -ed endings sometimes go only, or chiefly, with the root sense, sometimes with an expansion or special sense. Such details are not gone into fully here, though the examples make most of the uses clear. In the same way, the examples themselves are the only guide to expansions which are dependent upon a change in the sort of word (e.g. to have a cold or a complex).HOW TO MAKE USE OF THE LIST
1. The nearest French and German words are given for the root sense, special sense (marked by (s)), and expansions (marked by (e)) of every Basic word. Where the French or German words are the same for all the given expansions and/or special senses as for the root, they are not printed again. Naturally not every special use is covered by the French or German words, because these languages frequently have ways of saying the same thing without making use of the word in question.
2. A key to the special senses and expansions is given by other Basic words; and the strange effect is
frequently a sign of the important part played in the language by the words whose sense is made clear in
The sign : is put between the different expansions.
3. The same short forms for naming the different sorts of words (s., adj., prep., v., and so on). are used as in The Basic Dictionary. The one printed first is that under which the word is listed for Basic purposes. The French and German for the different sorts of words which a word may take the place of is given only when, in those languages, the connection with the root is not clear.
4. For making clear the sounds of the words as they are said on the records by Mr. Lloyd James, the 'phonetic' system of An English Pronouncing Dictionary, by Professor Daniel Jones, has been used. 1
5. The first examples are representative of normal uses; special attention being given to ways of getting round 'verb-' forms. Full stops are put between root-use examples and special senses or expansions. The same division is made between the different sorts of expansion. Examples of a word used as another sort of word come last.
6. * is put before the 250 special uses listed in the ABC.
Those inside ( ) are more important in connection with another word.
Those which are numbered are taken from the 130 grouped in the ABC,
in lists of 5 and 10, under names of acts and directions.
* is used, in addition, for marking the 50 least important international words.
7. ** is put before special uses which are, listed among the second 250 (not for learners).
8. In the French and German parallels, words or parts of words which are given only to make the sense clearer are put between [ ]. ( ) are used where there are two possible parallels, one with and one without the part between ( ).
In its present form, the work will be of value chiefly to teachers with some knowledge of normal English. But, together with the ABC, it gives all the material necessary for putting the system into other languages. This has now been done in French, Spanish, German, Italian, Dutch, Czech, Danish, Chinese, Japanese, and a number of other languages; so that there is little trouble in making the right selection of examples, with the help of Basic by Examples.
1 . With certain changes which will probably be made in later printings of the book. There are four records playing for 22 minutes, price 10/-post free, from The OrthologicÓl Institute.
C. K. OGDEN.The Orthological Institute,