National Thesaurus Day: A day to honour the author of Roget’s Thesaurus

National Thesaurus Day: A day to honour the author of Roget’s Thesaurus

Thesaurus helps us do more than just have a conversation, it helps us have a discussion, a talk, or an exchange!

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Tuesday, January 17, 2023, 07:20 PM IST
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Are you a poet or a writer, or just a common person who loves to enrich their vocabulary? The thesaurus is definitely your best friend!

January 18 is celebrated as National Thesaurus Day to honour Peter Mark Roget, the author of Roget’s Thesaurus, who was born on this day in 1779.  

Roget started the book in 1848 and finished in 1852 with 15,000 words. The book’s full original title was 'Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases Classified and Arranged so as to Facilitate the Expression of Ideas and Assist in Literary Composition.'

Thesaurus helps us do more than just have a conversation, it helps us have a discussion, a talk, or an exchange!

Thanks to the thesaurus, we can do more than just tell friends we are happy; we can also be merry, delighted, and overjoyed!

Birth of Thesaurus

In 1840, Roget retired from a successful career in medicine and spent the rest of his life working on Roget’s Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases. The work was the result of decades of collecting lists of words and categorizing them, much like a scientist would collect specimens. In Roget’s case, he collected words. He first published his thesaurus in 1852. And it was more than a book of synonyms – it was a complete categorization and organization of each word by meaning. 

Since then, poets and writers have used the thesaurus to help make their writing come to life.

How do you celebrate Thesaurus Day?

Use a thesaurus to find the right word for your writing. Play a word game to expand your vocabulary.

Explore the bookstore and discover a new (or old) thesaurus to page through.

Challenge friends to describe each other with as many words as possible without using the thesaurus. Then see how their descriptions improve when they do.

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