How to


Headword and variant spellings:

All variant spellings are in strict alphabetical order and are followed by deviant forms (between round brackets): uncommon spellings that are rarely attested. If the deviant form is not illustrated by the citations in the main body of the entry, a reference is provided.

Headwords in square brackets are currently unattested. However, the form has been created as a plausible construction, usually to keep words of the same etymological family together in alphabetical order. The use of round brackets for the headword indicates that the entry is rejected (i.e. phantom entry). It is still included in the dictionary to signal its existence as an error in modern editions, medieval manuscripts and/or the First Edition of the Anglo-Norman Dictionary.

Cognate dictionaries:

Each entry is linked (hyperlinked where possible) to the equivalent entries in 9 cognate dictionaries of French, English and Latin:

FEW: W. von Wartburg, Französisches etymologisches Wörterbuch: eine Darstellung des galloromanischen Sprachschatzes (Bonn, Heidelberg, 1922-).

Gdf and GdfC: F. Godefroy, Dictionnaire de l’ancienne langue française et de tous ses dialectes du IXe au XVe siècle (Paris, 1880-1902); GdfC = Complément to Gdf.

TL: A. Tobler and E. Lommatzsch, Altfranzösisches Wörterbuch (Berlin, 1925-2002).

DEAF: Kurt Baldinger et al. (eds), Dictionnaire étymologique de l’ancien français (Québec, Tübingen, Paris, 1971-) (; References cover DEAFél, DEAFplus and DEAFpré.

DMF: Robert Martin et al. (eds), Dictionnaire du Moyen Français (

TLF: Trésor de la Langue Française informatisé (

OED: Oxford English Dictionary (

MED: Hans Kurath, et al., Middle English Dictionary (Ann Arbor, 1952-2002) (

DMLBS: R.E. Latham et al. (eds), Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources (Oxford, 1975-2013) (


When a word can be considerd a loanword, the language(s) through which it is most likely to have entered Anglo-Norman is/are indicated. The term ‘loanword’ refers to a word that has been borrowed into Anglo-Norman from another language with little or no modification (e.g. English tenysballe or Latin testudo). The original etymology of a word that has become Anglo-Norman is not indicated at this level (e.g. topace from Latin topazus and originally Greek τόπαζος will not be tagged as a loanword).

Part of speech:

The grammatical category of an entry is indicated. When there is more than one option, they are separated. Common abbreviations are used for there (a. for ‘adjective’, s. for ‘substantive’, v.trans. for ‘transitive verb’, v.intrans. for ‘intransitive verb’, v. absol. for ‘absolute verb’, v.refl. for ‘reflexive verb’, for ‘present participle’, p.p. for ‘past participle’, sbst. inf. for a substantival use of the infinitive, etc.).

Adjectival/substantival uses of the present/past participle are usually placed under the verb. However, if the verb is otherwise not attested, these words are treated as adjectives/substantives. Similarly, if they have become lexicalized as words in their own right, they are treated separate from the verb. 

Senses and definitions:

AND entries are organized on the basis of semantic principles: the core sense is always the first sense. Additional senses are numbered, and subsenses (which may be more specific to a certain context) are indicated by a diamond. Longer entries have been given an overview box of all senses.

English definitions aim to reflect the grammatical category used by the Anglo-Norman word.

A set of searchable tags (see also ‘Advanced Search) is added to the definitions in order to specify semantic fields and/or specific language usages. These tags help to clarify the definition and establish it within a wider context. They can be pressed to open additional AND entries with the same tag.


Every sense is followed by citations. These have references to editions or manuscripts, indicating page or folio number, followed by any further numeral information that may help the user locate the citation on the page (paragraph number, line number, etc.). Texts written in verse usually omit the page number and only provide a line number. Text sigla are explained in the Source Texts section, which can also be accessed directly by pressing the siglum.

The main function of these citations is to illustrate and justify the definitions. If an entry has only one citation this usually testifies to the rarity of the word.

Citations also provide the entry’s historical evidence. They are given a date of composition and a date of manuscript, and are organised in chronological order per sense. If a sense is common, two or three citations per century will demonstrate this.  Effort has been made to provide the earliest attestation of every sense. The date of the overall earliest attestation is given alongside the headword (both in the entry itself and in the browse-column).

Locutions and phrases:

Locutions, prepositional verbal constructions and set phrases are treated separately, at the end of every relevant part of speech.

Signature and links:

Each AND2 entry (from G- onwards) is signed with the initials of the editor primarily responsible; see ‘Project Members’.

‘See also’ links with other AND entries that belong to the same etymological family.

For creating a direct link to any AND entry, press ‘Cite this entry’ at the top of the page. Old-style AND hyperlinks which include a ‘D’ (e.g. will continue to function, but should no longer be made.



The AND can be accessed either directly or through an alphabetical index.

As to the first option, ‘Quick Search‘ (top right of the screen) provides direct access to entries as typed in the box. A picklist of existing entries offers suggestions for words beginning with any string of letters typed in the box.

For the second option, ‘Browse the Dictionary’ (left of the screen, sub ‘Browse’) lists all headwords of AND entries together with selected variant spellings. Headwords of substantial entries appear in white, whereas variant spellings/cross references are in yellow (and link directly to the relevant entry or entries). ‘Jump to’ allows you to access sections of the alphabet starting with any number of letters typed in this box.

The entry log keeps a record of the entries you’ve looked at during your session, allowing you to quickly return to a previous entry. The number of entries in the log is displayed in brackets in the tab and entries are listed in the order you viewed them. To clear the log press on the Clear button. This will remove all entries except the one you’re currently viewing from the list.

Your search results are listed in alphabetical order here. The number of results is displayed in brackets in the tab. If there are many results you can press the up and down buttons to scroll through the list. Return to the full list of results by pressing on the Results page button or clear your search by pressing on the Clear search button.

Press the up and down buttons to scroll through the list or enter text into the jump to box to go straight to entries beginning with your text.



The AND provides five types of advanced search.

  1. Headwords and Forms allows you to do wildcard searches of all variant and deviant spellings in the dictionary. This option replaces the former ‘regular expression’ search with a more intuitive system.You can enter a word or part of a word. You may use an asterisk wildcard to search for words beginning (e.g. tre*), ending (e.g. *ment) or containing your term (e.g. *mon*). You may also use a question mark wildcard to denote any single letter (e.g. am?n* will find words beginning ‘amon’, ‘amun’ etc). You may also search for an exact word by surrounding it in double quotes (e.g. “poer”). Citation date allows you to limit your search to any specific period of time (e.g. fifteenth-century words ending with -isun).
  1. Citations allows you to do a wildcard search of all content of the citations in the AND (including non-Anglo-Norman words). This option was previously offered as ‘Concordance search of AND citation’. See above for the wildcard system.This option lets you locate forms in citations, no matter under what headword(s) the citation(s) occur(s). It will, however, ignore forms located in headwords, variants and deviants.In addition, you can limit your search by Citation date (time period) and/or by siglum (source text).
  1. English Translations allows you to do a wildcard search (see above) of all English definitions and translations. It provides an alphabetical list of all relevant English words and links these to the applicable AND entries. This option can effectively be used as a English-to-Anglo-Norman dictionary.You can once more limit your search to entries that have a citation in a year or range of years.
  1. Semantic & Usage Labels In 2014-15, the AND introduced a new set of searchable semantic labels (105) and explanatory usage labels (30) attached to AND definitions/translations. These are listed on the left, each time with the number of AND entries in which they appear. Precise definitions of each of these have been given and justify certain inclusions or exclusions.Select one or more of the labels on the left, and they will appear in the blue box (‘Selected Labels’). Press ‘Search’ to see the results.This option allows you to do a search for these labels, either individually or in multiple combinations. The result forms a basic onomasiological dictionary, which uses semantic fields (e.g. plant names, weaponry, legal terminology, bird names etc.) or a stylistic tool (e.g. interjections, ironic use, euphemisms, etc.) to access the dictionaryAs before, a year or period of time can be specified.
  1. Language Since 2024 it is possible to do a search for the different languages of origin of loanwords (see definition above) in Anglo-Norman.



This section provides a bibliographical list of all of the texts considered Anglo-Norman and consulted during the creation of the Anglo-Norman Dictionary. Press on a letter to view the sources beginning with the letter.

Links to DEAF open on the Dictionnaire Étymologique de l’Ancien Français website.



This section provides access to 76 Anglo-Norman texts, together with further material.



This blog was started in 2012 by the AND editorial team, and allows them, as well as guest bloggers, to discuss Anglo-Norman lexis, projects or events.



This section publishes the annual David Trotter Memorial Lectures, held at Aberystwyth University, and organised by the Modern Languages Department. These started in November 2016, a year after the death of the AND’s Chief Editor.



This section provides a selection of articles by the AND’s editors, which first appeared in print journals, books published by the AND and a number of otherwise unpublished transcriptions of Anglo-Norman texts.

Please note that all these materials are copyright, and made available for reading here by kind permission of the respective rights holders. It is strictly forbidden to copy any of these articles from this site on to any other.



For all AND sigla, see Bibliography.

a.                                adjective

adv.                            adverb

A-N                            Anglo-Norman

ANTS                         Anglo-Norman Text Society, Oxford and London, 1939- ,

BL                              British Library, London,

BN                             Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris,

CFMA                        Classiques français du moyen âge, Paris, 1910-.

BVM                          Blessed Virgin Mary

DEAF                         Kurt Baldinger et al., Dictionnaire étymologique de l’ancien français (Québec, Tübingen, Paris, 1971-),

Dean                         R. J. Dean and M. Boulton. Anglo-Norman Literature: A Guide to Texts and Manuscripts, ANTS OPS, 3 (London, 1999)

DMF                           Robert Martin et al., Dictionnaire du Moyen Français,

DMLBS                      David Howlett et al., Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources (Oxford, 1975-2013)

EETS                          The Early English Text Society, London (1864- )

FEW                          W. von Wartburg et al., Französisches etymologisches Wörterbuch (Bonn, Heidelberg, 1922-)

Gdf                            F. Godefroy, Dictionnaire de l’ancienne langue française et de tous ses dialectes du IXe au XVe siècle (Paris, 1880-1902)

GdfC                          Complement to GdF

inf.                             infinitive

JC                              Jesus Christ

M.E.                           Middle English

MED                         Hans Kurath, et al., Middle English Dictionary (Ann Arbor, 1952-2002),

MS(S)                        manuscript(s)

OED                           Oxford English Dictionary,

p.p.                            past participle                           present aprticiple

PRO                           see TNA

s.                                substantive

SATF                          Société des anciens textes français, Paris, 1875-

TL                               A. Tobler and E. Lommatzsch, Altfranzösisches Wörterbuch (Berlin, 1925-2002)

TLF                             Le Trésor de la Langue Française informatisé,

TNA                            The National Archives (formerly Public Record Office),

v.absol.                     absolute use of a transitive verb (i.e. verb lacking its direct object)

v.intrans.                     intransitive verb (i.e. verb not using a direct object)

v.refl.                           reflexive verb

v.trans                         transitive verb (i.e. verb using a direct object)