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Lomonosov Dictionary to be Published
February 13, 2007 13:42

Russian Academy of Sciences plans to publish the dictionary of Mikhail Lomonosov in 2011, when scientific community all over the world will celebrate 300 anniversary of the genius.

“Lomonosov Dictionary” will be trilingual, consisting of Russian, German and Latin parts. The project “M.V. Lomonosov: the dictionary of a linguistic personality” unites linguists from Moscow, Saint Petersburg and Kazan universities and is aimed to praise the scholar, who deserved to be called the symbol of Russian culture and Russian Academy of Sciences. Academy’s corporate badge carries a graven portrait of Lomonosov, whose key ideas of academic science still make sense in the 21st century.

Said lexical dictionary will be compiled on the basis of preliminary “content analysis” of Mikhail Lomonosov’s works. As for the vocabulary, its compilation has been started as long ago as in 2005 under the auspices of Russian academy of Sciences president Yuri Osipov. Several experimental projects – publishing Lomonosov Encyclopedia, for instance –, performed by fellows of Lomonosov Museum, which is a part of Anthropology and Ethnography Museum, have anticipated dictionary compilation. Moreover, the writing team considered dictionary extension by means of including terminology of natural sciences in the dictionary. The Institute of Linguistic Studies decided to realize this idea in the “Lomonosov Dictionary”.

This fundamental work is of great importance, because the amount of author’s dictionaries in our country is insufficient, totally lacking any bilingual dictionaries. And this is the situation in the country, where Pushkin, the best part of whose poems and letters are in French, has wrote his masterpieces – no Pushkin’s dictionary of French exists.

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I should say that, of course, there were several attempts to create Lomonosov’s dictionary, but none of them was brought to an end. The director of RAS’s Institute of Linguistic Studies considers publishing texts, belonging to Mikhail Lomonosov, who was equally fluent in Russian, German and Latin languages, to be instructive for studying impact of Latin and German languages on Russian language standards of the eighteenth century. Russian language has survived a crucial period in the second half of the 18th century, which in many ways has defined language’s further history: borrowings from Church Slavonic and European languages together with folk speech invasion.

First stage of compiling “M.V. Lomonosov: the dictionary of a linguistic personality” was preparation of electronic text library, first of all, scientist’s works in natural sciences, which part of M. Lomonosov’s heritage is most poorly studied. Enthusiastic fellows have already compiled electronic records and concordances (alphabetic word form indexes) for his works in Latin and Russian languages.

The institute of Linguistic Studies of Russian Academy of Sciences is the oldest centre of Russian academic lexicography (dictionary making) in our country, which hosts studies on compiling explanatory, dialect and historic dictionaries of the Russian language. For 115 years institute fellows collect unique word record, containing over eight million of quotation cards.

    Science & Life

Kizilova Anna

Tags: Mikhail Lomonosov     

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