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yorkie_bear

Reverse Chinese-English dictionary

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yorkie_bear

A very very long time ago when I studied in China I bought one of the most useful dictionaries - a reverse Chinese English dictionary. Basically if you had 2 characters for a Chinese word, couldn't recognise the first one, but knew the second, you could look up the word using the second character.

I've since been to a few bookshops in China to see if any updated versions are available but can't find it. For those in China, if you see one can you tell me where? Thanks!

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fenlan

This is called the 汉英逆引词典 and I believe you can buy it in the Foreign Language bookshop in Wangfujing, Peking.

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yorkie_bear

doh!

amazon!

many many thanks to you both.

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devi9

A friend of mine has the $30 dollar one you're looking at and it's very good, but very old (the first version was printed in 1983 and the second in 1993). The Cheng and Tsui $60 book offered on amazon was published much more recently (in 1999) and the company makes good Chinese resources. I've used many of their products and have been satisfied with all of them, but I've never used the Cheng and Tsui reverse dictionary. I can't find the dictionary on the Cheng and Tsui website (http://www.cheng-tsui.com/default.asp), but I think that's because in 1999 they were working with the Commerical Press and now they're on their own.

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Song You Shen

It looks like the one posted on Amazon was printed orignally in 1985...

Comments: A Reverse Chinese-English Dictionary: 1985 hardcover by Commercial Press, Bejing; binding tight/square, pages clean, appears unread, note inside front cover, 1343 pgs, slight spine dip, no dust jacket

I guess they must have reprinted in in 1999.

Youshen

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devi9

weird, I think we're looking at different books. I see:

Product Details

Hardcover

Publisher: Cheng & Tsui (June 1, 1999)

Language: English

ISBN: 0887271790

Average Customer Review: based on 4 reviews. (Write a review)

I think the one you're talking about is the first of the two and the one I'm talking about is the second? But then under comments the New one doesn't have any. So I wonder which book the information I see refers to. :conf

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Song You Shen

yeah, I'm talking about the used one... but there is no information about the new one. strange... :( I'm thinking about just going with the used one rather than the new one because the seller seems to have a better record... what do you think?

Youshen

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devi9

I would definitely agree, if there's any problem with the book you know the used book seller has good ratings and will probably deal with you rationally. If you're really interested in the newer and maybe published later book I'd contact the seller for more information. But it seems you're leaning towards the 1985 used one... here's what I would do:

contact new book seller to see what year it was published. if it was published in 1985 get the used one.

I would want a more recently published book, but in all honesty the 1985 edition is probably wonderful.

Either way I think you'll end up with something you enjoy. It just depends on how much the publication date matters to you. It is true that sometimes publishers will republish a dictionary with only a hundred new entries just to get the book back in the public eye.

Let me know what you decide, and how you like whichever book you get! After I figure out which grammar book I want, I think a reverse dictionary (definitely Cheng and Tsui) is in order (my friend is tired of me stealing hers :twisted: ).

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Song You Shen

Ok, an update on this:

So I got in contact with one of the sellers from the Amazon website that was given. This is what he explained to me:

"I have not heard of a 1985 edition. The edition of this book that I sell is the Commercial Press imprint of 1993, ISBN 7100016118. I have seen a copy printed in 1986 copy, and it looks like there have not been any substantial changes between the 1986 and 1993 printings. It looks like there may be a 2002 edition as well. These new printings are porbably not changes per se, they are just reprintings due to the books enormous popularity.Cheng and Tsui's 1999 edition, ISBN 0887271790, looks like it may have a new cover, but it does not seem to have any substantial changes from the 1986 printing, either. The only difference between the Commercial Press printings and the Cheng and Tsui printing is political -- the former is printed in China, the latter in Taiwan. This is readily apparent from the ISBN numbers. China books published overseas are often marketed through Taiwan companies, hence the different ISBN's. Aside from the cover, there is no difference I can see between the various editions of this book.The Commercial Press edition is printed on bible paper and it looks a little beat up even when you buy it off the shelf, but the binding has held up very well with a lot of punishment (I travel with it). The Cheng and Tsui edition may look newer, but it does not to be so tough. Hope this helps!"

So I kept in contact with him and found out that he was going to travel over to China. I had him pick me up a copy of the 2002 version and for everything (including shipping, tax, etc) it is costing me $40. Not bad at all. He just sent it, so I don't have it, but when I get it, I'll be sure to comment on it.

Youshen

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devi9

Wow, that sounds great! Please let me know how you like it, and if possible this guy's contact information.

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Lugubert

For a reverse dictionary, my uni teacher has the 汉英逆引词典, Beijing 1985. It looks quite useful.

For standard Ch-Eng, we used to have A Chinese-English Dictionary (Revised Edition), Beijing 195, Foreign Language Teaching ans Research Press, ISBN7-5600-0739-2, 1435 pages incl. useful appendices, nominally 128 Yuan. I'm very happy with it, but there is a new edition with more examples, under another name (and another publisher?) which will be recommended from next semester. I'll try to get the details ASAP.

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