A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
        Search Transcribed Entries:

Support the Dictionary

We are now seeking volunteers to help us with the following tasks:

  • Transcription

    If you would like to help with our transcription efforts, send me an email at atrejub@gmail.com - I will get back to you as quickly as possible with a link to our spreadsheet and instructions. See the sample markup below.

Sample Transcription:

<span class="headword">Hype'rbola</span>. <i>n.s.</i> [<i>hyperbole</i>, Fr. ||GREEK|| and ||GREEK||.] In geometry, a section of a cone made by a plane, so that the axis of the section inclines to the opposite leg of the cone, which in the parabola is parallel to it, and in the ellipsis intersects it. The axis of the hyperbolical section will meet also with the opposite side of the cone, when produced above the vertex. <i>Harris.</i>

<span class="quotedText">Had the velocities of the several planets been greater or less than they are, or had their distances from the sun, or the quantity of the sun's matter, and consequently his attractive power been greater or less than they are now, with the same velocities, they would not have revolved in concentrick circles, but have moved in <i>hyperbola's</i> very eccentrick.</span> <i>Bentley's Serm.</i>


If you are using Windows, you might want to take a look at the open source Johnson's Dictionary Transcription Helper.

Please send plain .txt files if possible (Notepad in Windows, textedit on a Mac, etc) - Microsoft Word tends to add spaces and use "fancy quotes," which messes things up.

You can send a straight transcription of the text without tags or you can add tags such as those listed below (this speeds up the process of getting your entries posted):

  • The most important parts are the <span class="headword"></span> and <span class="quotedText"></span> tags around the headword and illustrative quotes. If the headword is a verb and thus includes the word "To", place the "To" before the headword tag: To <span class="headword">Go</span>.

  • When transcribing poetry, place a <br> at the end of each line.

  • Author names are surrounded by <i></i>.

  • Foreign or unclear words can be marked ||GREEK|| or ||UNKNOWN|| as needed. Accented characters can similarly be marked if you are unfamiliar with the HTML codes for accented characters. For example, you can mark liberté as either ||liberte|| or libert||e||.

  • Transcribe the long s (ſ as in deſire) as a regular s (desire).

  • № is entered as a special code: &#8470; - "№. 27." is thus "&#8470;. 27."

Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Support the Dictionary." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: August 4, 2014. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/support-the-dictionary/.

  1. I’d love to transcribe, though I’d rather transcribe text only and leave the tags alone. If you’d like for me to also add tags, I’m sure I can manage. Please let me know!

  2. Eugene on December 11th, 2013 at 9:15 pm
  3. I’d love to help out, I refer to this website on a weekly basis.

  4. Daud on January 5th, 2014 at 3:39 pm
  5. I am teaching a graduate seminar this spring on the History of the English Language with 15 students. Could the 16 of us be transcribers? Thank you for all of your hard work on this terrific project!

  6. Mary Lynne Hill, Ph.D. on January 6th, 2014 at 2:18 pm
  7. I would love to help with this. I have no problem using tags.


  8. Jamey L. Cordery on February 12th, 2014 at 3:09 pm
  9. Would love to transcribe the Dictionary. Best dictionary there is after the Oxford.

  10. Nick Matavka on March 18th, 2014 at 5:20 pm
  11. Brandi, definitely send me a batch of entries to transcribe. Random is fine.


  12. Mark Richardson on April 7th, 2014 at 11:34 pm
  13. I would like to help with this. I think I can give the tags a go?

  14. Kitty Chevallier on May 7th, 2014 at 5:53 am
  15. I’d love to transcribe, adding tags and all, and I understand that you’re in the process of “streamlining” the process (which in my book means your changing everything, woe to those who’ve gone before!!!) and I think it would be best if I waited until the NEW was all there were. (Were all there was? Hate subjunctives in English….)

  16. OneBirdieMa on November 23rd, 2014 at 6:29 pm
  17. PS Brandi, this is one heck of a hobby!!!!!

  18. OneBirdieMa on November 23rd, 2014 at 6:30 pm

Leave a Reply

johnsonsdictionaryonline.com is completely free to use. Johnson's dictionary is in the public domain, but please respect the hours of work put into this site by linking to it or crediting it. This site assumes no liability for its content or for the content of external sites linked to it, and has no warranty or guarantee concerning accuracy or availability.