A Frequency Dictionary of French

Learning French

A Frequency Dictionary of French: Core Vocabulary for Learners

I just learned about this book today and I really wish I could go to a bookstore or library and look at it. Amazon’s Look Inside feature only includes the introduction and none of the actual content but Routledge’s site offers a few sample pages to download and lets you view 30 pages total.

I love frequency lists and all things based on corpus linguistics. I’m really interested in knowing how much informal and spoken vocabulary is included in this book.  The corpus was based on 23 million entries, half spoken and half written – but even some spoken language is rather formal (EU parliamentary debates, for example) when compared to everyday language that you can hear in schools or stores.

Libraries in France aren’t all that great, and the bookstores around here have tiny English sections (usually just novels) so I have to rely on the internet for my linguistic and language books. I really do miss being able to wander through Borders or Barnes & Noble and skim through all of the books. Sure, there are plenty of language books written in French, but they are mostly méthodes de Français Langue Etrangère and that’s not exactly what I’m looking for. If someone knows of a frequency list book like Routledge’s but available in French bookstores, let me know.

These frequency dictionaries are also currently available in Spanish, Portuguese, German, Mandarin and Contemporary American English. Arabic and Czech are forthcoming in 2010, but no Italian yet.