The pull-down menu allows you to select what part of the entry to search:
Headword – the word being defined
If you have trouble finding a headword:
Try using a wildcard (below)
Try removing punctuation and spaces, e.g. search alexandersfoot instead of Alexander's foot.
Full Text –anywhere in the entry
--Definition – the definitions
--Etymology –the word’s history
--Quotation –illustrative quotation
--Author –author of illustrative quotation
--Title – title of a work, anywhere in the entry
--Places – places named anywhere in the entry
--People – people named anywhere in the entry except authors of illustrative quotations
--Usage – Johnson’s comments about the word
Foreign – both the language name and foreign words in that language
Headword Sounds like – Soundex search of headwords
Using Wildcards to Widen Your Headword Search
hor* finds words that begin with hor
*ology finds words that end with ology
qu*y finds words that begin with qu and end with y
b.t finds words begin with b, end with t, and have one letter (.) in between
Omit hyphens from your search.
For more information about searching, see our Guide to Searching.