Our story

Oxford Dictionaries puts language information at your fingertips, wherever you are – on your PC, a mobile device, or even when using a search engine or social media app.

Oxford Dictionaries is part of Oxford University Press (OUP), a department of the University of Oxford. Our mission is to provide reliable, evidence-based, up-to-date dictionaries.

We are a global organization, covering major languages such as English, Chinese, Arabic, Spanish, French, and Portuguese, and less widely spoken ones such as isiZulu and Malay. 

See a list of all of our languages here >>


A passion for language

We are dedicated to improving communication through an understanding of, and a passion for, language. 

We’ve been making dictionaries for more than 150 years and we continue to innovate, developing new tools and services as they are made possible by new technologies. 

We create content for everyone – general users, students, professionals, writers, games puzzlers, teachers, language learners, researchers, technology companies, and software developers. Our content is available wherever you need it: online, mobile, or in print.


More than just words

We immerse ourselves in everything to do with language. Our lexicographers, technologists, and linguists collect, process, and analyse living languages and show how they are changing. For us, dictionaries are not just about defining words: we provide information about a word’s history, its usage, its relationship to other languages, and who’s using it – from academics to users of regional or slang words.


Our global business

We work globally to produce the best resources for a wide range of languages. Our language experts are based around the world because local knowledge is vital to building high-quality language resources.


Our heritage

Oxford Dictionaries is proud to publish the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), the world’s largest repository of information about the English language. First published in instalments between 1884 and 1928, it remains the premier dictionary for academic research in the English language. The OED houses millions of examples showing how words have been used over time and how they are related to each other. It also charts the development of many varieties of English around the world.

Find out more about the history of Oxford Dictionaries >>


Find out more about what makes Oxford Dictionaries unique >>


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