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13 encyclopedias, dictionaries and other online reference works

22 mayo, 2021

Wikipedia is the first option that comes to mind when we need find information about anything. This ubiquitous online encyclopedia has become the resource par excellence of many Internet users, which would not be so bad if it were because they only stay with that.

The reality is that the information from Wikipedia not always so exact as would be desirable, and if you are researching on a specific topic, it is convenient to contrast what you read in it with other sources and reference pages. It will not be for lack of them, of course. On the Internet, in addition to Wikipedia, you can find all these other online encyclopedias and reference databases, to quench your thirst for knowledge about practically any topic.

Wolfram Library Archive

Wolfram Alpha

Wolfram Alpha is a somewhat peculiar online search engine; instead of returning a list of web pages where you could get the answer to your query, answer it directly, extracting the response from a structured database and processing it instantly.

But in addition to its search engine services, you can also use Wolfram Alpha as a reference work with its Wolfram Library Archive, a knowledge file with thousands of documents that you can consult on mathematics, art, humanities, engineering, technology …

Encyclopedia Britannica Online

Britannica

A few years ago in many homes there was a shelf filled with the volumes from some encyclopedia. Among them, one of the most prestigious was Britannica, which today continues available online, with a wide selection of articles on topics of all kinds.

Although Wikipedia may have overtaken it in terms of response speed, the Encyclopedia Britannica it remains one of the most prestigious reference works.

Encyclopedia Smithsonian

Smithsonian

Even if you have never visited them, surely you have heard of the Smithsonian museums. This cultural institution also has your own reference website, with million records of the archives and libraries of its 19 museums, classified in different categories: art, science, history, technology, culture …

Scholarpedia

Scholarpedia

Although it uses the same software platform as Wikipedia, Scholarpedia is a slightly different online encyclopedia. And it is precisely because it follows an approach a little more traditional.

Instead of allowing anyone to write or edit their articles, the content of the Scholarpedia is written only by experts (who also check each other). This results in articles deeper and better documented, although in return the Scholarpedia has less scope.

Open Library

Open Library

This extraordinary project of The Internet Archive puts at your disposal a database with million books registered. Its aim is to bring together all the books published around the world in one place.

While they get it, you can create a user account to explore, consult or even borrow and read the books currently included in the Open Library.

Library of Congress

Library of Congress

The United States Library of Congress is one of the North American culture repositories most important in that country, and also has with online version. In it it is possible to consult the catalog of more than 18 million records with books, music, images, maps, manuscripts and more.

National Library

National Library

The Spanish version of the Library of Congress could be the National Library, which also has its complete catalog of online documents, and allows you to consult their bibliographic references.

Books, press, manuscripts, sound and audiovisual records … the complete collection of the National Library, just a click away.

BBC Country Profiles

BBC Country Profiles

If what you need is information about a certain country, a good source to get it is the BBC website. In it you will find a section called Country Profiles, where you can read a complete file on countries around the world.

Demographic data, political leaders, press, recent history … a summary of all the key events and dates of a country, presented in an entertaining and easy to review way.

Wordreference

Wordreference

If you work with multiple languages, a reference page indispensable it is Wordreference, a excellent multi-language online dictionary with support for Spanish, English, French, Italian, German, Swedish, Polish, and more. You also have definitions and synonyms in Spanish at your disposal.

Another element of great value in WordReference is its forums, where you can solve all kinds of Doubts related to translations, definitions, use of the language, etc. All in a website with a minimalist design, fast and easy to use.

the free dictionary

the free dictionary

Focusing on English, another great online dictionary is the free dictionary, with sections for specific vocabulary of medicine, law and economics, synonyms, acronyms, and even expressions in English (the dreaded idioms). Dictionary entries are very complete, with definition, pronunciation and translation.

The Free Dictionary is also available at other languages (including Spanish), but with fewer features than the original English version. Your home page can also be customized with various information modules.

RAE Dictionary

RAE Dictionary

For full dictionary of Spanishof course we have the DLE, the Dictionary of the Spanish Language, available from the website of the RAE. This dictionary contains all the words officially included in our language, of which it provides definition, etymology and expressions in which it is used.

I founded

I founded

The RAE is the official body that “cleans, fixes and gives splendor” to the Spanish language, but it is not distinguished precisely by its speed. In order to more immediate doubts, of current words and expressions, the best reference page par excellence is that of I founded.

Here you can consult all kinds of linguistic doubts, both through its website and on social networks. The website also compiles a series of recommendations on expressions recently used in news and other media. One page essential for all of us who are dedicated to writing.

Forvo

Forvo

Finally, a reference page for a very specific need: to know how do you pronounce a word in any language. At least this is the goal of Forvo– Become the most important pronunciation guide on the Internet for any language.

Currently several hundred thousand words can be consulted in more than 200 languages, and also the user community itself can contribute new pronunciations.

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