Simplified Dictionary

Hi Everyone,

Just a quick question. I am searching online (eBay, Amazon, Abe, etc.) for a copy of the Gregg Shorthand Dictionary Simplified and I’m seeing all sorts of hits, but so many of them have different publish dates.

Would anyone know what the most current and up-to-date year that this dictionary was published?


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  1. The dictionary was published in 1949 under the title "Word list of Gregg shorthand simplified; a dictionary of 30,000 authoritative Gregg shorthand outlines", with 328 pages. It was reissued in 1951 with the title "Gregg Shorthand Dictionary Simplified", and it has the same content. Later on, there were printings in different years. For example, I have a printing of June 1961.

    There were British (1950) and Canadian (1953) versions of the Simplified dictionary, with 312 and 292 and pages, respectively. These are very rare.

  2. I'm not up on editions of this dictionary, but I know it was published for several years, and this is a great dictionary, btw. I have owned several copies (because of moving a lot and a hoarding instinct) but I never noticed any differences in them–that doesn't mean there weren't any, but I didn't find any. I would say everything else being equal–price and condition–don't get the oldest edition. If there were any bugs, surely subsequent printings had them worked out. After discovering the Anniversary edition of Gregg Shorthand, I gave up the Simplified books almost entirely. But I miss that dictionary. Not only does it have so many words, but it has every nearly every geographical or given name I have ever looked for. Today I've been thinking about getting another one and penciling in my preferred outlines beside the printed one whenever it differs.

    If you go to there is a Simplified dictionary that can be read online or checked out for a couple of weeks and read in Adobe digital editions. You have to create an account, but it's all free. Also, if you decide to check it out, choose the pdf version. It still has to be opened in the special reader, but the outlines won't appear properly in the epub version.

    1. I knew there was a copy on, but had no idea the check-out procedure was that simple. Or for that matter that you could read it online without checking it out. Now that I can get to my computer again, I'll have to take a look. Thanks!

    1. Here's a thought: If I were to take my hard copy of the Simplified Dictionary and scan it in to my computer and then use Adobe Acrobat or some other program to make it a searchable doc (which is very convenient for a dictionary) for my own personal non-commercial educational use, I think that at worst this is a gray area as far as the law is concerned.

    2. IANAL, but if you bought the book, then I would expect that you could do pretty much anything with it for your own personal use: photocopy it, scan it, copy it out by hand in sixteen copies…

      Things just start to get tricky if you give things away to other people, but as long as you're just using your legally-acquired copy yourself, I'd say you can go nuts.

    3. Okay, so then if my neighbor, who is also studying shorthand and owns a copy of the 1951 dictionary, comes to visit and sees how easy it is to do a Ctrl+f search and find all the words with the suffix -ologist, shall I then send him/her to the scanner for a 5 hour stint, or simply give her a copy of the one I already made? I found Calibre when I first got my e-reader for the purpose of converting my ebooks to a format that works on my brand. From what I've read, I don't think that individuals need to be unduly concerned about using digital reference materials in a non-commercial, personal, informal educational setting and if they are not seeking to avoid paying for whatever it is.

    4. Sharing it with your neighbour is where you start going into the “fair use” provisions etc.

      If she also owns a copy, you could probably argue on “not depriving the publisher of revenue” grounds (though I think that’s not what copyright protects), but even if not, there’s (at least where I am) a provision about sharing things with a small number of people you know personally. (With “small number” probably meaning something like “up to 7 or so”.) But consult a lawyer if you want to be really sure 🙂

      I feel better about sharing things with the group because it’s a defined, finite group of people and we do all know each other at least a bit.

  3. I'm still looking for the correct and latest Gregg simplified dictionary. I talked to a couple of book sellers on Alibris because some list their book as "Gregg Shorthand Dictionary" another one was listed as "Gregg Shorthand Simplified Dictionary". None of the sellers have pictures of the book either. One response I got (which was listed as a 1963 publish date) ended up being Diamond Jubilee. The other seller just said that once they list a book they can't go back and look at it because it's in their warehouse but to go ahead and purchase it because they have a 100% return policy (well yeah, that means I'd end up paying shipping both ways – LOL). And none of them would provide me with an ISBN #. When I try searching for the keywords: 30,000 authoritative the hits usually just come up as "Gregg Simplified Dictionary". LOL – Didn't know it was so complicated. I do have the searchable .PDF of the Anniversary dictionary from Algelfishy which has helped a little bit but I do notice a lot of differences, too.

    I'll keep searching 🙂

    1. If they enter the books correctly, as long as it has the words "Gregg", "Simplified" and "Dictionary", it's the one you want. Within that, the latest date is best, but I didn't worry about the differences. I don't know if there's a 2nd Edition Simplified Dictionary, which would be a later printing.

      They don't put too much effort into cataloging those old books. Once someone types a description, it gets copied over and over. Some clerk finds a title that's close enough and uses it. Even ISBN doesn't help much, since the publisher can change ISBN for differences that are so minor only the publisher cares — or use the same ISBN across major changes.

      Sometimes you get a bargain out of a mistake. Keep the one you received and get shipping on the right one free. It all depends on the seller.

    2. So Carlos, the eBay link you provided is for the "30,000 Authoritative…" dictionary for the Simplified (2nd edition)?

      If so, then $4.48 is a great price and I will snatch that up as soon as I hear back. I really want to have a hardcover book to go along with my Simplified Manual and my Most Used Phrases book (which I find very helpful, too).

      Thanks again and if you can let me know as soon as you are able then I will order that book.

  4. Yay, ok, I finally found a used hardcover Simplified Dictionary on eBay for $15 bucks (not too bad I suppose). The book looks in excellent condition and has a 1951 publish date. I'm looking forward to getting it.

    I will have the following textbooks in my shorthand arsenal:

    o Gregg Shorthand Manual (Simplified Edition)
    o Most Used Words & Phrases According… (long title)
    o Gregg Shorthand Dictionary Simplified

    Are there any other books that any of you guys out there think would be helpful to have?

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