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  1. the writing, editing, or compiling of dictionaries.
  2. the principles and procedures involved in writing, editing, or compiling dictionaries.

Origin of lexicography

First recorded in 1670–80; lexic(on) + -o- + -graphy
Related formslex·i·co·graph·ic [lek-si-koh-graf-ik, -si-kuh-] /ˌlɛk sɪ koʊˈgræf ɪk, -sɪ kə-/, lex·i·co·graph·i·cal, adjectivelex·i·co·graph·i·cal·ly, adverbun·lex·i·co·graph·i·cal, adjectiveun·lex·i·co·graph·i·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for lexicography

Historical Examples

  • Associated words: lexicography, lexicographer, lexicographic.

    Putnam's Word Book

    Louis A. Flemming

  • And for more than 300 years after the Conquest English lexicography stood still.

    The evolution of English lexicography

    James Augustus Henry Murray

  • But only two independent contributions to the development of lexicography were made in the earlier half of the nineteenth century.

    The evolution of English lexicography

    James Augustus Henry Murray

  • Johnson's great work raised English lexicography altogether to a higher level.

    The evolution of English lexicography

    James Augustus Henry Murray

  • He composed numerous and valuable works on grammar, lexicography, poetics and ecclesiastical biography.

British Dictionary definitions for lexicography


  1. the process or profession of writing or compiling dictionaries
Derived Formslexicographer, nounlexicographic (ˌlɛksɪkəˈɡræfɪk) or lexicographical, adjectivelexicographically, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for lexicography


1670s, from lexico- + -graphy. Related: Lexicographic; lexicographical.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper